Bolton welcomes detention of supertanker in Gibraltar

US National Security Adviser welcomes detention of supertanker containing Iranian oil and headed to Syria.

Ben Ariel ,

John Bolton
John Bolton

US National Security Adviser John Bolton on Thursday welcomed the detention of a supertanker containing Iranian oil in Gibraltar.

“Excellent news: UK has detained the supertanker Grace I laden with Iranian oil bound for Syria in violation of EU sanctions. America & our allies will continue to prevent regimes in Tehran & Damascus from profiting off this illicit trade,” he tweeted.

The supertanker Grace 1 was detained on suspicion that it was carrying crude oil to Syria in what may be the first such interception under EU sanctions.

Mapping indicates the Grace 1 loaded Iranian crude oil on April 17, and if this were confirmed, the attempted delivery to Syria could also be a violation of US sanctions on Iranian oil exports.

European Union sanctions against the government of Syria took effect in May 2011, after President Bashar Al-Assad’s crackdown on demonstrators that developed into a protracted civil war.

Iran, a patron of Assad, is also under US sanctions to bar all international sales of Iranian oil. The sanctions were imposed after President Donald Trump withdrew from the 2015 nuclear deal with Tehran.