Seizure of UK tanker aimed to keep security, Iran writes to UN

July 26, 2019

TEHRAN – Iran’s permanent mission to the United Nations has said that the seizure of a British-flagged oil tanker by Iran was aimed at maintaining security in the Strait of Hormuz, a narrow waterway that connects the Persian Gulf to the Sea of Oman.

In a letter to the UN Security Council on Wednesday, Iran said that the British tanker “Stena Impero” collided with a small fishing boat on July 19 and badly injured its crew, some of whom remain in critical condition.

Afterwards, instead of responding to distress calls from the boat and radio communications from Iranian authorities, the British tanker turned off its transponder and "dangerously" changed course in the direction of incoming ships, the letter read, according to Press TV.

That is when, according to the letter, Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) intervened and took the ship and its crew into custody.

Everything that Iran did was aimed at upholding international law and ensuring secure navigation in the Persian Gulf, the permanent mission explained.

The letter also rejected claims by the UK government in a recent letter to the UN Security Council, where it had claimed IRGC forces acted illegally by approaching the Stena Impero in “Omani territorial waters.”

NA/PA

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