Iran’s Revolutionary Guards seize commercial ship in Gulf – U.S. Navy

Iran’s Revolutionary Guards seize commercial ship in Gulf – U.S. Navy

Iran’s Revolutionary Guards have forcibly seized a commercial ship in the Gulf, according to a U.S. Navy spokesperson. The vessel, which was possibly involved in smuggling, was taken in international waters. The U.S. Navy chose not to respond further, as confirmed by U.S. 5th Fleet spokesperson Commander Tim Hawkins.

Ambrey, a British maritime security company, reported an attempted seizure by Iranian forces of a small Tanzanian flagged tanker. The incident occurred approximately 59 nautical miles northeast of the Saudi Arabian port city of Dammam. Ambrey noted that Iran regularly intercepts smaller tankers suspected of smuggling oil.

Data from analytics firm Vortexa reveals that around one-fifth of the world’s seaborne crude oil and oil products pass through the Strait of Hormuz, a crucial chokepoint between Iran and Oman.

In a separate incident, the U.S. Navy announced its intervention to prevent Iran from seizing two commercial tankers in the Gulf of Oman. This event is part of a series of attacks on ships in the area since 2019. Commander Tim Hawkins emphasized that U.S. forces remain vigilant and ready to protect the navigational rights of lawful maritime traffic in the Middle East’s critical waters.

Iran claimed to have a court order to seize a tanker sailing in Gulf waters on Wednesday. The vessel in question, the Bahamas-flagged Richmond Voyager, was managed by U.S. oil major Chevron. Tehran had previously seized two other tankers in May, including the Marshall Islands flagged Advantage Sweet, which had been chartered by Chevron.

According to the U.S. Navy, Iran has harassed, attacked, or seized nearly 20 internationally flagged merchant vessels since 2021.

The article was written by Jonathan Saul and edited by Hugh Lawson and Andrew Heavens. The reporting adheres to the Thomson RushHourDaily Trust Principles.

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