UK Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt (file photo)
UK Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt (file photo)

Will facilitate release of seized tanker if Iran assures oil not headed for Syria: UK

ANI | Updated: Jul 14, 2019 01:31 IST

London [UK], July 14 (ANI): British Foreign Minister Jeremy Hunt on Saturday said that the UK would "facilitate release" of the seized oil tanker 'Grace One' if Iran assures that the oil is not headed for Syria.
"Just spoke to Iranian Foreign Minister (Javad) Zarif. Constructive call. I reassured him our concern was destination not origin of the oil on Grace One & that UK would facilitate release if we received guarantees that it would not be going to Syria, following due process in Gib courts," Hunt tweeted.
"Was told by FM Zarif that Iran wants to resolve the issue and is not seeking to escalate. Also spoke to @FabianPicardo who is doing an excellent job coordinating issue and shares UK perspective on the way forward," he added.
Iran has previously denied that the tanker, which was seized by Gibraltar officials and Britain's Royal Marines on July 4, was bound for Syria. It was suspected of breaking EU sanctions.
UK raised the level of threat to British shipping in Iranian waters to 'critical' on July 9. The country also claimed that Iran failed to halt a British oil tanker in the region -- an accusation which has since been dismissed by Tehran. (ANI)