British piracy of tanker reminiscent of its colonial atrocities: cleric

July 26, 2019

TEHRAN – Interim Friday prayer leader Ahmad Khatami has blasted the British government’s seizure of a tanker carrying Iranian oil, saying the act of piracy was reminiscent of the “old fox’s many atrocities.”

Addressing worshippers in Tehran on Friday, Khatami said Britain has flared up the hatred of the Iranian nation by its actions.

The Britons had a long history of interfering in Iran’s internal affairs and now they are accompanying the United States in its unjust sanctions against the Iranian nation, he said.

On July 4, British Royal Marines in Gibraltar stormed the Iran-operated supertanker Grace 1 off the coast of Gibraltar, seizing the 300,000-ton vessel based on the accusation that it was carrying oil to Syria in possible violation of the European Union’s sanctions on the war-torn Arab country.

Iran has denied reports that the supertanker was carrying oil to Syria.

Last week, tensions between Tehran and London escalated when Iranian forces impounded a British-flagged oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz for involvement in an accident with an Iranian fishing boat, after the tanker ignored distress calls.

After the incident, the British government advised UK ships “to stay out of” the Strait of Hormuz “for an interim period.”

Father of new British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has told Press TV that the UK and Iran should swap tankers seized by each side to solve the current stand-off.

“The best thing to do would be to say, you let our ship go, we’ll let your ship go, easy peasy,” Stanley Johnson said.

MH/PA

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