Iran Tries to Seize British Tanker in Persian Gulf

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Three Iranian gunships surrounded a British tanker in the Persian Gulf but were repelled by a British warship and forced to retreat.

This latest episode comes as the United States tightens sanctions on Iran that have cut deeply into its oil sales, its main export. Iran threatened to seize a British ship after the British Navy last week captured an Iranian tanker they said was on its way to Syria to deliver oil.

In this case, the three gunships tried to force the British tanker into Iranian waters, where it could be seized. According to the Times of Israel:

The HMS Montrose, a British warship which had been escorting the tanker in the wake of increased tensions in the area, was “forced to position herself between the Iranian vessels and British Heritage and issue verbal warnings to the Iranian vessels, which then turned away,” the statement said, according to the Guardian.

“We are concerned by this action and continue to urge the Iranian authorities to deescalate the situation in the region.”

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