Friday, January 27, 2023

Iran Seizes Foreign Ship Carrying Smuggled Fuel

Iran has seized a vessel carrying contraband fuel in the Persian Gulf, arresting a number of its crew members.

The coastguard chief in the southern Iranian Hormozgan province said the shipment contained 283,900 litres of smuggled diesel fuel.

Twelve Philippine nationals have also been arrested in that connection.

Legal proceedings on the case are underway through judicial channels.

Earlier in August, the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) seized another foreign vessel in the Persian Gulf containing 700,000 litres of smuggled fuel.

The vessel had loaded the fuel from other ships, and was smuggling it to Arab states of the Persian Gulf.

Following the seizure of the ship, 700,000 litres of fuel were confiscated and seven foreign crew members arrested.

The IRGC had earlier in July seized a foreign tanker smuggling one million litres of Iranian fuel near the Strait of Hormuz in the Persian Gulf.

The tanker MT Riah was a UAE-owned Panama-flagged vessel seized in the south of the Iranian Larak Island on July 14.

IRGC naval forces, which were patrolling the waters on an anti-smuggling mission, acted against the vessel in a “surprise” operation upon ascertaining the nature of its cargo and securing the required legal approval from Iranian authorities.

The ship had loaded the fuel from Iranian dhows and was about to hand it over to other foreign vessels in farther waters. The vessel, which had 12 foreign crewmembers aboard at the time of the seizure, is capable of carrying two million liters of fuel.

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