The foreign oil tanker, which has apparently broken the rules, has been captured by the IRGC Navy forces in the Strait of Hormuz waters on Wednesday, Tasnim news agency reported.
The prosecutor of Tehran announced that the ship was impounded by the IRGC navy following the complaint of the plaintiff and the order of the judicial authority, the Judiciary’s Mizan news agency reported.
AP quoted the U.S. Navy’s 5th Fleet as saying that the vessel was a Panama-flagged oil tanker, identified as the Niovi.
It is a second oil tanker seized in a week on Wednesday in Persian Gulf waters, the U.S. Navy said.
Last week, the Iranian Navy seized a Marshall Islands-flagged oil tanker in the Sea of Oman and directed it toward Iran’s territorial waters after the tanker hit an Iranian vessel and tried to flee in violation of maritime regulations.
That tanker is being held by Iranian authorities in Bandar Abbas, the Marshall Islands flag registry said on Tuesday, Reuters reported.
Maritime security firm Ambrey has said it believed the Advantage Sweet’s seizure by Iran was in response to a recent seizure via a court order by the United States of an oil cargo aboard the Marshall Islands tanker Suez Rajan.
The Niovi oil tanker seized on Wednesday had been traveling from Dubai towards the UAE’s Fujairah Port, the navy said.
The Niovi last reported its position at 0231 GMT on Wednesday, off the coast of Oman in the Strait of Hormuz, with Fujairah as its destination, Refinitiv ship tracking data showed.
According to the International Maritime Organization shipping database, the Niovi’s owner is Grand Financing Company, and the ship is managed by Greece-based Smart Tankers, which did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.
About a fifth of the world’s crude oil and oil products passes through the Strait of Hormuz, a narrow choke point between Iran and Oman, according to data from analytics firm Vortexa.