Iran Seized A US-Bound Oil Tanker In Gulf Of Oman (Video)
ISWNews Analysis Group – A delinquent oil tanker, which injured several Iranian crew members after colliding with an Iranian fishing boat in the Persian Gulf, was identified and seized by the Iranian Navy in the Sea of Oman.
On April 28, Iranian media aired video footage documenting the seizure of the Marshall Islands-flagged oil tanker Advantage Sweet. The footage showed masked Iranian navy commandos boarding the United States-bound tanker from a helicopter on April 27 as it was sailing in the Gulf of Oman. The seizure was first announced by the U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, which demanded Iran to immediately free the tanker.
Tehran said that the tanker was seized after colliding with an Iranian fishing boat. However, reports that appeared later revealed that the tanker was captured in retaliation to the recent seizure of an Iranian oil shipment by the U.S.
Maritime security company Ambrey said that the U.S. seizure took place at least five days before Iran’s action in the Gulf of Oman. “Ambrey has assessed the seizure by the Iranian Navy to be in response to the U.S. action,” it said in an advisory to clients.
“Both tankers were Suezmax-sized. Iran has previously responded tit-for-tat following seizures of Iranian oil cargo,” the company concluded.
The sources familiar with the matter told the Reuters news agency that Washington took control of the oil shipment aboard the China-bound Marshall Islands tanker Suez Rajan after securing an earlier court order. The tanker’s last reported position was near southern Africa on April 22, ship tracking data showed.
Iran seized tankers in retaliation for western countries targeting its oil shipments on several occasions in the past. In 2019, Iran seized two British-flagged tankers shortly after the UK impounded an Iranian vessel that had stopped at Gibraltar en route to Syria. Later in 2022, Iran also took two Greek-flagged vessels in the Strait of Hormuz after Greece had allowed the U.S. to seize an oil shipment from an Iranian tanker in Greek waters.
The new seizures will further escalate tensions between the U.S. and Iran. The Persian Gulf remains one of the focal points of the years-long standoff between the two sides.