Teheran frees tanker seized by the Pasdaran

This morning the vessel left the port of Bandar Abbas where it had been kept since July. The ship is bound for Port Rashid, in Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates. Iranian government spokesman:a "friendly approach" created conditions for "the release of the ship".


Tehran (AsiaNews / Agencies) - This morning the British-flagged tanker Stena Impero, seized by the Iranian authorities last July, left the port of Bandar Abbas. This is what the Refinitiv ship-tracking data experts say, which seem to confirm the words of the Iranian president Hassan Rouhani who had anticipated the imminent departure of the cargo ship while he was at the UN General Assembly in New York.

Iranian government spokesman Ali Rabiei confirmed to journalists the conclusion of the legal proceeding . "Based on a friendly approach - he added - which makes it possible to forgive errors, the ground was created for the release of the tanker, which is now free to move".

Special Wards of the Guardians of the Revolution (Pasdaran) had seized the boat on July 19 while it was sailing the Strait of Hormuz, for alleged violations of naval traffi. Analysts believe the move was a response to the detention - two weeks before - of an Iranian oil tanker off the coast of Gibraltar.

The ship was then released in mid-August, ignoring a warning from the United States that they wanted the vehicle to be blocked and its contents confiscated (oil from the Ayatollahs headed for Syria, according to Washington). The naval dispute is part of the tug of war between Tehran and Washington, triggered in May 2018 by the withdrawal from the nuclear agreement (Jcpoa).

The new destination of the Stena Empire is believed to be Port Rashid, in Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates (Eau), about 250 away. Maintaining a cruising speed it should take half a day to reach destination.