An Iranian flag flutters onboard the Adrian Darya oil tanker, formerly known as Grace 1, off the coast of Gibraltar in August 2019 Photo: AFP/File

U.S. says tanker spotted in Syria shows Iran deceitful

By Johnny BUGEJA

The United States said Thursday that Iran had shown itself to be untrustworthy after a tanker apparently delivered oil to Syria in defiance of promises.

"I think the importance here to our friends around the world in the international community is to note that once again you have been lied to and misled by the Iranian regime," State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus told reporters.

An Iranian vessel, originally called the Grace 1 and renamed the Adrian Darya 1, was held for six weeks by the British overseas territory of Gibraltar until authorities received promises it was not heading to Syria, Iran's main Arab ally.

The European Union maintains an embargo on Syria in response to President Bashar al-Assad's bloody crackdown on dissents and rebels.

Britain said Tuesday that Iran breached assurances and that the ship transferred oil to Syria, summoning the Iranian ambassador to protest.

"The Iranian regime broke its word and appears intent on fueling the Assad regime's brutality against the Syrian people, who continue to face widespread violence, death and destruction," Ortagus said.

"This fits into the web of lies perpetrated by the Iranian regime for 40 years," she said.

"Their deception and broken promises are not just aimed at the international community but the Iranian people, too," she said, criticizing the clerical regime's rights record.

President Donald Trump's administration has slapped punishing sanctions on Iran after walking away from a multinational accord on ending its nuclear program.

But Trump has recently said he is open to meeting Iran's leadership after France proposed an initiative aimed at lowering tensions.

Iran has rejected the authority of Gibraltar authorities to seize the ship, calling it an act of piracy.

Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi said Sunday that the Adrian Darya had "reached its destination and the oil has been sold," without providing further details.

The United States offered millions of dollars to the ship's Indian captain in an unsuccessful bid to encourage him to divert it to a U.S.-friendly port where the vessel could be seized.

© 2019 AFP

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

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What gall, expecting a country you unilaterally declare economic war on to cooperate in its own impoverishment and defeat. If you leave Iran no markets to sell its oil to, then it's going to sell its oil to whoever it can.

And does "the Assad regime's brutality against the Syrian people" include its war against the Islamic jihadists who until very recently controlled the majority of the country? The same Islamic jihadists who in any other context would be considered brutal enemies of the West?

6 ( +7 / -1 )

An international law is not being broken.

A UN law is not being broken.

A maritime law is not being broken.

Only a US law is being broken and the US is an arrogant country that considers itself the center of the universe.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Untrustworthy? Pot meet kettle. Kettle, pot.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

So, let's see, the US, the country that lied to the UN Security Council, because it needed to permanently shut up the Iraqi dictator it lied to, who tried to fire the previous head of the IAEA because he refused to echo the American lie, and succeeded in getting the previous head of the OPCW for the same reason claims that because Iran gave the government of Gibraltar a way out the dilemma that American and British lies put it in (break international law by keeping the pirated Iranian tanker captive or releasing it and becoming yet another victim of American economic terrorism when Trump threw a temper tantrum over them not breaking both their own and international law at his command) by telling them a 'little white lie' that didn't need to, but which would protect Gibraltar, is 'deceitful'.

Does anyone else find that ridiculous?

4 ( +6 / -2 )

I see nothing wrong with telling a little lie when held hostage, especially when told to infinitely bigger liars...

2 ( +3 / -1 )

My comment on why the US backs ISIS and Al-Qaeda and opposes Iran was quickly deleted by the moderator.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

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