Gibraltar denies it is gearing up to free Iranian tanker seized by the Royal Marines

A SENIOR official in Gibraltar has denied reports an Iranian tanker seized near the British overseas territory is poised to be released.

Tuesday, 13th August 2019, 5:19 pm
Updated Tuesday, 13th August 2019, 10:12 pm
A Royal Marine stands guard following the raid of an Iranian tanker near Gibraltar. Photo: MoD

The official said a report by Iran's semi-official Fars news agency that the Grace 1 tanker is leaving on Tuesday night are ‘untrue’.

The tanker was seized last month in a Royal Navy operation off Gibraltar, on the tip of southern Spain.

It is suspected of violating European Union sanctions on oil shipments to Syria, and its seizure deepened international tensions in the Gulf.

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The Gibraltar government insisted it is seeking to ‘de-escalate’ the situation over the Grace 1.

The Gibraltar Supreme Court is scheduled to hold a hearing on the case on Thursday.

Yesterday the Royal Navy sent another warship to the Gulf amid simmering tensions in the region between Iran and the West.

HMS Kent will join HMS Montrose as part of an American-led fleet to defend shipping in the Strait of Hormuz.