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An official slides down a rope during a helicopter raid on MSC Aries ship at sea in this screen grab obtained from a social media video released on April 13, 2024. Video obtained by Reuters/via REUTERS

An official slides down a rope during a helicopter raid on MSC Aries ship at sea in this screen grab obtained from a social media video released on April 13, 2024. Video obtained by Reuters/via REUTERS

Iran Says Crew Of MSC Aries To Be Released

Reuters
Total Views: 2159
April 27, 2024
Reuters

April 27 (Reuters) – Iran’s foreign minister said the crew of a seized Portuguese-flagged ship linked to Israel have been granted consular access and are expected to be freed, Iranian media reported on Saturday.

Iran’s Revolutionary Guards seized the container vessel MSC Aries with a crew of 25 in the Strait of Hormuz on April 13, days after Tehran vowed to retaliate for a suspected Israeli strike on its consulate in Damascus. Iran had said it could close the crucial shipping route.

Recent attacks on merchant shipping in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden by Yemen’s Iran-aligned Houthis, claiming solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza during Israel’s war with Hamas, have affected global shipping.

Related Article: Seized Ship’s Cargo Reveals Impact of Iran Tensions on Global Trade

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian told his Portuguese counterpart Paulo Rangel in a telephone call that the “humanitarian issue of the release of the ship’s crew is of serious concern to us,” Iranian media said.

He was quoted as saying the crew would be turned over to their ambassadors in Tehran. The reports did not say when this would occur.

Iran’s foreign ministry has said the Aries was seized for “violating maritime laws” and that there was no doubt it was linked to Israel.

MSC leases the Aries from Gortal Shipping, an affiliate of Zodiac Maritime, which is partly owned by Israeli businessman Eyal Ofer.

(Editing by William Mallard)

(c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2024.

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