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‘Oil cargo of tanker seized by Indonesia belongs not to Tehran': Oil Ministry

MT-ARMAN 114 oil tanker. (file photo)

The Iranian Oil Ministry denies any ownership of an oil tanker's cargo that Indonesia recently confiscated near its coast, noting that related reports lack credibility and are in line with anti-Iranian propaganda. 

“The cargo of MT-ARMAN 114 oil tanker, which was recently [seized] by Indonesia’s coast guard due to what was described as illegal transfer of oil [to another ship], does not belong to the Islamic Republic of Iran,” said the statement.

The statement said reports that this cargo belongs to Tehran "lack credibility" and are released to distort Iran's image. 

The Iranian-flagged tanker was seized by Indonesia on July 11 over a suspected illegal transfer of oil at sea.

Indonesian maritime authorities said the tanker carried 272,568 metric tons of light crude oil worth tens of millions of dollars.

Over the past years, the US navy has several times seized Iranian-controlled tankers and shipments of oil en route to other countries, citing its own sanctions on Iran's oil exports.

In April, US forces seized a Greek oil tanker called Suez Rajan carrying an Iranian oil cargo near southern Africa. The ship anchored off the coast of Texas in May.

On Thursday, an Iranian military commander warned that any oil company that unloads the cargo would be held accountable.

Earlier this week, the Wall Street Journal revealed that at least 800,000 barrels of Iranian oil remain untouched in US waters.

According to the paper, American firms are reluctant to buy the Iranian cargo, which is worth $56 million as they fear potential reprisals from Iran.

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