August 22, 2019 / 1:22 PM / 2 months ago

Iranian tanker wanted by U.S. not heading to Greece: Greek prime minister

Iranian oil tanker Adrian Darya 1, previously named Grace 1, sails after the Supreme Court of the British territory lifted its detention order, in the Strait of Gibraltar, Spain, August 19, 2019. REUTERS/Jon Nazca

PARIS (Reuters) - An Iranian tanker which the United States wants seized is not heading towards Greece as it sails through the Mediterranean, Greek Prime Minister Kyrikos Mitsotakis told France 24 TV on Thursday.

The Adrian Darya, formerly called Grace 1, left Gibraltar on Sunday. Ship-tracking data on Tuesday showed it was heading toward the Greek port of Kalamata on the southern coast of the Peloponnese and was scheduled to arrive next Monday.

“The ship is not heading towards Greece. We have not received a request for it to dock in a Greek port,” said Mitsotakis, who was in Paris for a meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron.

The tanker was detained by Gibraltar after British forces seized it in July on suspicion of breaking sanctions on Syria, but it was released on Sunday.

The United States wants to detain it again on the grounds it has links to Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, which it deems a terrorist organization.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Tuesday that the United States would take every action it could to prevent the tanker delivering oil to Syria in contravention of U.S. sanctions.

Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta and Inti Landauro; Editing by Angus MacSwan

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