Iran says seized Israel-linked ship broke maritime law

AFP , Monday 15 Apr 2024

Iran said Monday that the Israel-linked ship it seized on the weekend had violated international maritime law and was undergoing "necessary investigations".

Motorists drive their vehicles past a billboard depicting named Iranian ballistic missiles in servic
Motorists drive their vehicles past a billboard depicting named Iranian ballistic missiles in service, with text in Arabic reading the honest person s promise and in Persian Israel is weaker than a spider s web , in Valiasr Square in central Tehran on April 15, 2024. AFP

 

Iranian authorities had previously offered little information about why the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps seized the ship MSC Aries ship near the Strait of Hormuz on Saturday.

"The ship was directed into the territorial waters of Iran because it violated international maritime laws," foreign ministry spokesman Nasser Kanani said.

The ship's crew failed to "adequately respond to questions from Iranian authorities," he told a briefing.

"It is certain that this ship belongs to the Zionist regime," Kanani added, referring to Israel.

The ship's seizure took place hours before Iran launched its first-ever direct attack on Israel, launching hundreds of drones and missiles which the Israeli military said were nearly all intercepted.

The attack was in response to an Israeli strike on the Iranian consulate in Damascus on April 1 which killed seven Revolutionary Guards including two generals.

Israel and the United States have denounced the seizure of the ship as an act of "piracy". 

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