15:40 GMT +322 September 2019
Listen Live
    HMS Montrose (F236)

    British Warship to Escort UK-Flagged Vessels in Strait of Hormuz After Iran's Tanker Seizure

    CC0
    Middle East
    Get short URL
    27759
    Subscribe

    Former Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt earlier shared that British military vessel, HMS Montrose, had recently escorted a number of UK-flagged ships sailing through the Strait of Hormuz amid London's tensions with Tehran over a detained oil tanker in Gibraltar.

    A British Royal Navy vessel has received an assignment to accompany all vessels under the country's flag sailing through the Strait of Hormuz, the Defence Ministry stated. The announcement comes a day after new UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Cabinet was appointed. Military veteran and member of Parliament Ben Wallace has been given the post of Defence Secretary under the new government.

    "The Royal Navy has been tasked to accompany British-flagged ships through the Strait of Hormuz, either individually or in groups, should sufficient notice be given of their passage", the government spokesperson said.

    The spokesman further stressed the importance of the freedom of navigation in global trade and noted that the UK will be doing everything in its power to defend it. Former Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt earlier said that the warship, HMS Montrose, stationed in the Gulf had already escorted a number of British vessels sailing in the region.

    The British government also announced plans to form a European force tasked with ensuring the freedom of navigation with France, Italy and Denmark reportedly supporting the idea.

    The statement comes after Iran detained British tanker Stena Impero on 19 July over violations of maritime laws, after it ignored warnings, switched off its positioning device, and collided with an Iranian fishing boat. Although Tehran earlier warned that it may detain a British vessel over a conflict with London regarding the tanker Grace 1, Iranian officials noted that Stena Impero's arrest was not a "retaliation".

    British authorities detained the tanker Grace 1, carrying Iranian oil, in Gibraltar suspecting it of sailing for Syria and thus violating EU sanctions against the country. Tehran denies that the oil was destined for Syria and accused the UK of endangering trade and the freedom of navigation with the illegal arrest of the tanker.

    Related:

    UK Sends Mediators to Iran in Bid to Free Seized Oil Tanker – Reports
    UK Ship Passes Strait of Hormuz for First Time Since Iran Seized British Tanker – Report
    Iran Informs UN of Probing How Seized UK Oil Tanker Violated Navigation Rules
    Amid UK-Iran Tanker Stand-Off, New Delhi Steps Up Efforts to Secure Release of Indians On Board
    Pentagon to Escort US Vessels in Persian Gulf After Iran Seizes UK Tanker
    Tags:
    escort, Royal Navy, Strait of Hormuz, Iran, UK
    Community standardsDiscussion
    Comment via FacebookComment via Sputnik