JEREMY Hunt has warned Iran that it’s on a ‘dangerous path’ after the nation seized a British oil tanker in the Gulf.
Iranian media falsely reported that the tanker had been involved in an accident with an Iranian fishing vessel.
“Yesterday’s action in Gulf shows worrying signs Iran may be choosing a dangerous path of illegal and destabilising behaviour after Gibraltar’s legal detention of oil bound for Syria,” Hunt said on Twitter.
“As I said yesterday our reaction will be considered but robust. We have been trying to find a way to resolve Grace1 issue but will ensure the safety of our shipping.”
Britain’s mighty Royal Navy seized Iran’s Grace 1 tanker in Gibraltar earlier in July on suspicion of smuggling oil to Islamic State hellhole Syria in breach of European Union sanctions.
Hunt also said he was very concerned about the loss of contact between jailed British-Iranian aid worker Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe and her family after she was moved from a prison in Tehran to a psychiatric ward in a hospital.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office said yesterday that: “There are 23 seafarers aboard.”
“There have been no reported injuries and their safety is of primary concern to both owners and managers.”
“The IRGC seized the tanker at the request of the maritime authorities in the Iranian province of Hormozgan for “not following international maritime regulations,” state television cited an IRGC statement as saying.”
“The tanker was taken to a coastal area and turned over to the authorities to take the necessary legal steps, state television said.”
In a TV speech, the Iranian leader said: “Evil Britain commits piracy and steals our ship and gives it a legal appearance.
“Iran and those who believe in our system will not leave such vicious deeds unanswered.”
Additional reporting by Reuters