Posted on September 25, 2019 by Ilias Kiritsis

According to a statement by an Iranian Maritime official, released on September the 22nd, the British-flagged Oil Tanker, Stena Impero is soon to be released. 

“After the issuing of the ruling for the end of detention of the English tanker Stena Impero this vessel will soon, and after the passing of 65 days, begin its movement from the port of Bandar Abbas toward international waters,” said Allahmorad Afifipour, head of  Ports and Maritime Organisation for the Iranian Province of Hormozgan.

Soon after the quote was released, the Swedish Media broadcaster, SVT conducted an interview with the Stena Bulk Chief Executive, Erik Hannell who was quoted as saying the following, in response to the Iranian statement. 

“We have received information now this morning that it seems like they will release the ship Stena Impero within a few hours. So we understand that the political decision to release the ship has been taken.”

“We hope to be able to head out within a few hours, but we don’t want to anticipate events. We want to see that the ship sails out of Iranian territorial waters,” said Mr. Hannell during the interview.

According to Mr. Afifipour, legal procedures are currently being carried out in order to allow the vessel to depart Iranian waters. 

However, he added that there is an ongoing investigation as to alleged violations that the tanker is accused of. 

The Stena Impero was initially seized back in July, in what many have seen as a retaliation for the UK detaining of the Grace 1 (now known as Adrian Darya 1), over the breach of EU sanctions against Iran. 

Posted in Operations , Security , Iran , Persian Gulf , Strait of Hormuz , UK , Middle East

If you enjoyed this article sign up to our free weekly newsletter here