Photo Credit: Fars News
The seized British oil tanker Stena Impero

The Islamic Republic of Iran announced Monday that the British-flagged oil tanked Stena Impero, seized on July 19 by its Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corp’s naval commandos in the Strait of Hormuz, is free to leave.

The announcement came more than a month after the UK had released an Iranian oil tanker that was detained off the coast of Gibraltar for its violation of international sanctions by shipping oil exports abroad.

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However, Iranian government spokesperson Ali Rabiei did not specify when the tanker would actually begin its voyage out of Iranian waters, CNN reported. At the time of its capture in July, 23 crew members were seized along with the vessel. Seven of them, all Indian nationals, were finally released earlier this month.

Erik Hanell, CEO and president of Stena Bulk, owner of the vessel, said the tanker is still in the port of Bandar Abbas in the Persian Gulf, adding “We have no further information about it.”

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.
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