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Britain accuses Iran of selling oil tanker to Syria

UNITED STATES, WASHINGTON (OBSERVATORY) — Britain said Iran had sold the cargo of oil aboard Adrian Daria I to Syria in disregard of its assertions about the tanker previously held in Gibraltar on suspicion of violating EU sanctions.

The tanker, called Grace 1, was seized by British Royal Navy on July 4 on suspicion of heading to Syria.

Gibraltar authorities released the tanker in mid-August after receiving official written assurances from Tehran that it would not unload its 2.1 million barrels of oil in Syria.

But the Foreign Office said in a statement on Tuesday it was clear Iran had violated those assurances and oil had been transferred to Syria.

“Iran has shown total disregard for its assertions about Adrian Daria I,” Foreign Minister Dominique Rapp said in a statement.

“This sale of oil to the brutal regime of (Syrian President Bashar al-Assad) is part of the behavioral pattern of the Iranian government that aims to destabilize regional security.”

Britain said it had summoned Iran’s ambassador to condemn what his country had done and would raise the issue at the United Nations this month.

“Iran’s actions represent an unacceptable violation of international norms,” ​​Rapp said in his statement.

The State Department stopped short of confirming whether Iran had sold oil to Assad’s government, but hinted.

“As we have warned before, the Iranian regime has once again backed away from the assurances it has given the international community over its intentions to illegally transfer oil to the criminal Assad regime,” a foreign ministry spokeswoman said.

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