Iran arrests a Filipino crew over smuggling oil in Gulf
Iran’s coast guard confiscated an international tugboat accused of smuggling oil into the Gulf and arrested its 12 Filipino crew members, state television revealed on Saturday.
They said that the tugboat was carrying nearly 284,000 liters of diesel. The study did not show what the national flag the ship was carrying.
Iran, which has some of the cheapest petrol in the world because of high state subsidies, has been battling widespread oil smuggling overland to neighboring nations and by ocean to Gulf Arab states. It has often captured ships that it says are being used to smuggle petrol into the Gulf.
Incidents arrive at a moment of tension between Iran and the West in the Gulf that has been increasing since the US left the nuclear agreement with Tehran in 2015 last year and re-imposed sanctions.
While Iranian media accounts state that they smuggle an approximately 10 million liters of gas every day, Tehran has promoted legal gasoline exports through its energy exchange.
Despite of that, Gasoline revenues reached a record high of $72 million last week on the Iran Energy Exchange (IRENEX) for exports to neighboring nations, according to State TV.
The standoff between Iran and the United States, caused by Washington’s exit from the nuclear agreement in May last year, has stirred concerns of a Gulf War with worldwide repercussions.
In July, Iran captured a British oil tanker close the Strait of Hormuz for suspected maritime offenses, two weeks after British troops arrested an Iranian tanker close Gibraltar suspected of carrying oil to Syria in breach of European Union penalties.
Afterwards, The Iranian tanker was published subsequently. This week, Iran liberated seven of the 23 crew members of the British-flagged tanker.
In conclusion, there is an international disappointment with what Iran did and the Asian community doesn’t seem to let this go easily.