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IRGC Naval Commander Threatens More Oil Tanker Seizures

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The commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards naval forces has again warned that Iran will seize oil tankers in case of any further seizures of Iranian oil vessels in the context of ongoing US sanctions.

During a speech at the National Day of the Persian Gulf ceremony, Alireza Tangsiri asserted, “The time when they could seize our oil tankers has passed,” indicating that Iran would retaliate against such actions. “Our enemies know that if they take an oil tanker from us, we will retaliate. They took our oil tanker, and in response, we seized one of theirs, forcing them to release it,” he added.

The Iranian Navy seized an oil tanker in the Sea of Oman in January. The regime said the act was a retaliation against the previous seizure of a large cargo of Iranian crude oil by the US government in 2023, involving the same vessel now recaptured by Iran.

According to the Iranian Navy, the operation was conducted under a court order with the approval of the Ports and Shipping Organization, framed as a response to “oil theft” by the United States.

The vessel, previously known as Suez Rajan, was seized by the US last April while carrying 977,000 barrels of sanctioned Iranian crude oil.

To secure its release, the owner paid a fine of $2.46 million after lengthy legal proceedings. The previously seized Iranian crude oil was sold off by the US for $83.4 million after deductions for substantial logistical costs.