Iran Seizes UAE Vessel, Two Other Oil Ships in Gulf
The Iranian navy seized three oil-carrying ships in its territorial waters, including one sailing under the flag of the United Arab Emirates, state television said Wednesday.
The UAE-registered Rana as well as two vessels sailing under the flags of Honduras (the Sandi) and Belize (the Toufan) were intercepted and seized for "illegal entry" into Iranian waters north of Kish island, it said, citing a navy official.
No details were given about the destination of the three vessels.
Iran has in recent months announced the seizure of more than a dozen ships alleged to be carrying contraband Iraqi oil in the Gulf in defiance of international sanctions against Baghdad.
Iraq is only allowed to sell oil under the UN-administered oil-for-food program established to ease the effects of the sanctions, which were slapped on Baghdad for its 1990 invasion of Kuwait that led to the Gulf War.
Iran has repeatedly insisted it would patrol against contraband Iraqi oil, of which some 4.8 million tons is being moved through the Gulf annually, according to US navy estimates - TEHRAN (AFP)
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