Iran's Interference With Tanker Traffic A 'long-haul' Scenario

38 Days(s) Ago    👁 60
irans interference with tanker traffic a longhaul scenario

Since last Novembers brazen hijacking of the Galaxy Leader pure car truck carrier in the Red Sea by Houthi rebels, six commercial vessels have been captured in the wider Middle East region by Iran and its proxies, predominantly Yemens Islamist Ansar Allah militia.

Currently, satellite imagery shows the MSC Aries , seized by Iran Revolutionary Guard Corps members on Saturday, situated north-west of the eastern tip of Qeshm island on the Strait of Hormuz.

Not far from the tanker is another oil carrier, the St Nicholas , hijacked on January 1, and two other tankers, the Advantage Sweet and Niovi .

Before Saturdays seizure of the Aries, more than 90 seafarers were being held hostage by Iran and its proxies, citing justification for its interference with maritime trade because of Western support for Israels war on Gaza.

The Advantage Sweet and Niovi , however, were respectively hijacked by Iranian forces on April 27 and May 3 last year, before the October 7 attack of Hamas on Israel.

Nevertheless, Saturdays latest armed interference by Iran of a commercial vessel has added 25 crew members to the number of seafarers held hostage, now totalling 115.

The latest development has shipping and energy experts bracing for a long-term timeline of uncertainty , CNBC reports.

Iran is in this for the long haul, said Samir Madani, co-founder of Tankertrackers.com, an independent online service that tracks and reports crude oil shipments in several geographical and geopolitical points of interest.

The MSC Aries was identified by Iran as having a link to Israel.

The containership has a carrying capacity of 15000 TEUs.

MSCleases the Aries from Gortal Shipping, an affiliate of Zodiac Maritime, which ispartly owned by Israeli businessman Eyal Ofer.

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