‘Iranians expect retaliation against British seizure of oil tanker’

July 14, 2019 - 23:36

TEHRAN – The Islamic Coalition Party Secretary General, Asadollah Badamchian, has said the Iranian people expect the government to take retaliatory measures in the aftermath of the British seizure of an Iranian oil tanker.

“Our nation believes that the British must pay the price of this act of piracy,” Badamchian said on Sunday, according to Tasnim.

“There’s a public expectation that a tit-for-tat action must take place,” he added. 

The oil tanker was seized on July 4 in an operation involving British Royal Marines. It was captured under the allegation that it was carrying crude oil to Syria in breach of EU sanctions.

Royal Gibraltar Police arrested the captain and his deputy on Thursday, while two second officers of the Grace 1 tanker were held on Friday.

According to Press TV, Spain, which challenges the British ownership of Gibraltar, has said the seizure was prompted by a U.S. request to Britain and appeared to have taken place in Spanish waters.

Iran has condemned the seizure as “maritime piracy,” vowing to employ all its political and legal capacities to secure the release of the vessel.

Top Iranian figures have called for retaliatory measures against the British government.

Secretary of the Expediency Council Mohsen Rezaee has proposed that Iran should seize a British oil tanker if London doesn’t release the tanker.

“The Islamic Revolution has never been an initiator of tension during its 40-year-old history, however, it has not hesitated to respond to bullies and thugs,” Rezaee tweeted after the incident.

Rezaee, the former IRGC chief, added, “If Britain doesn’t return the Iranian tanker, the duty of responsible [Iranian] bodies is to seize a British oil tanker in a retaliatory measure.”

MH/PA

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