Reuters: Iran says UK-flagged tanker 'ignored distress call,' taken to Bander Abbas20 July 2019 | 11:41 | FOCUS News Agency
The Stena Impero was in an accident with an Iranian fishing boat whose distress call it ignored, the agency quoted the head of Ports and Maritime Organisation in southern Hormozgan province, Allahmorad Afifipour, as saying.
It was taken to Bander Abbas, situated on Iran’s southern coast and facing the strait. “All its 23 crew members will remain on the ship until the probe is over,” Afifipour said. The 23 crew comprised 18 Indian nationals and five others of other nationalities, he said.
The tanker’s operator, Stena Bulk, said on Friday the ship had been “in full compliance with all navigation and international regulations”, but was no longer under the crew’s control and could not be contacted.
Britain’s foreign minister Jeremy Hunt said on Friday it would respond to the seizure in a “considered but robust” way and was as urgently seeking information about the vessel.
No one was immediately available for comment at the Foreign Office early on Saturday.
The vessel had been heading to a port in Saudi Arabia and suddenly changed course after passing through the strait at the mouth of the Gulf, through which a fifth of the world’s oil supplies pass.
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