Iranian tanker photographed off Syrian port Tartus: U.S. satellite firm

The blacklisted tanker, which is loaded with Iranian crude oil, sent the last signal giving its position between Cyprus and Syria sailing north at 15:53 GMT on Monday, Refinitiv data showed.

By REUTERS
September 7, 2019 12:13
1 minute read.
Iranian tanker photographed off Syrian port Tartus: U.S. satellite firm

What appears to be the Iranian oil tanker Adrian Darya 1 off the coast of Tartus, Syria, is pictured in this September 6, 2019. (photo credit: MAXAR TECHNOLOGIES/HANDOUT VIA REUTERS)

The Iranian oil tanker Adrian Darya 1, which is at the center of a dispute between Tehran and Western powers and went dark off Syria earlier in the week, has been photographed by satellite off the Syrian port of Tartus, according to a statement on Saturday by Maxar Technologies Inc., a U.S. space technology company.

Maxar's supplied image shows the tanker very close to Tartus on Sept. 6.

The ship appeared to have turned off its transponder in the Mediterranean Sea west of Syria, Refinitiv ship-tracking data showed on Tuesday.

The tanker, which is loaded with Iranian crude oil, sent the last signal giving its position between Cyprus and Syria sailing north at 15:53 GMT on Monday, the data showed.

The vessel, formerly named Grace 1, was detained by British Royal Marine commandos off Gibraltar on July 4 as it was suspected to be en route to Syria in violation of European Union sanctions.

Two weeks later, Iran in retaliation seized a British-flagged tanker in the Strait of Hormuz leading into the Gulf.

Gibraltar released the Iranian vessel on August 15 after receiving formal written assurances from Tehran that the ship would not discharge its 2.1 million barrels of oil in Syria.

However, shipping sources say the tanker is likely to try to conduct a ship-to-ship transfer with another vessel for part of its cargo after Iran said a sale had been concluded.

Washington has warned any state against assisting the ship, saying it would consider it to be support for a terrorist organization – namely, Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.

The U.S. Treasury Department blacklisted the tanker on Friday.


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