Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Seyyed Abbas Mousavi says the country has officially warned the US government against making any fresh attempt to seize the Iranian oil tanker Adrian Darya (formerly Grace-1) which was recently released by Gibraltar after an unlawful 45-day seizure.
Speaking to reporters on Monday, Mousavi said if the US makes any other request for the seizure of the Iranian tanker in international waters would be a threat to maritime safety.
He also announced that Iran has, through the Swiss embassy in Tehran which represents the US interests, warned the Americans against making such a big mistake.
The comments came after the Adrian Darya 1 supertanker finally left the Strait of Gibraltar, and moved towards its new destination in Greece.
Britain’s naval forces unlawfully seized the vessel, then known as Grace 1, and its cargo of 2.1 million barrels of oil in the Strait of Gibraltar on July 4 under the pretext that the supertanker had been suspected of carrying crude to Syria in violation of the European Union’s unilateral sanctions against the Arab country.
Tehran, however, rejected London’s claim that the tanker was heading to Syria and slammed the seizure as “piracy.”
On Thursday, Gibraltar’s government announced it was releasing Grace 1 supertanker despite pressure from the US for the vessel’s continued detainment.
The announcement came just before the US Department of Justice (DOJ) unveiled a warrant for the seizure of the Iran-operated ship.
Gibraltar’s government said on Sunday it has knocked back a request by Washington to detain the supertanker, arguing that ““the EU sanctions regime on Iran is fundamentally different to that of the US.”