As 5 Iranian fuel tankers are en route to Venezuela to help with their fuel crisis, Iran’s Foreign Ministry has warned again that the United States will itself bear the responsibility for any foolish act that it could take against Venezuela-headed Iranian fuel tankers, saying Washington cannot come in the way of legitimate trade among independent countries.
Iran fears an offensive action by United States against its 5 tankers headed towards Venezuela as recently U.S. President Donald Trump has tweeted:
I have instructed the United States Navy to shoot down and destroy any and all Iranian gunboats if they harass our ships at sea.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 22, 2020
“The US itself will have to suffer the repercussions that arise out of any unthinking measure against the Iranian vessels,” ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi told reporters during a press briefing in Tehran on Monday.
“Should the Americans take any measure against our vessels’ free and legal movement around, they would face our decisive response,” he warned.
If Washington “does not like a country, this does not give it any grounds to prevent legal trade among countries, [take them under] sanctions, and cause trouble for them,” the official noted.
“International waters should remain safe either for all oil tankers or none,” the military official spoke on the condition of anonymity.
Vessel tracking data have reportedly suggested that an Iranian tanker that had loaded fuel at Bandar Abbas port in southern Iran at the end of March, sailed through the Suez Canal and entered the Atlantic on Wednesday.
Mousavi said, “Iranian vessels are bound for Venezuela carrying fuel shipments, the undertaking faces no legal prohibitions. The development is completely legitimate as opposed to maritime piracy “which is something that is mastered by the US.”
Iran Have No Hopes From Europe
The official also said Europe had already taken too long to duly cooperate with Iran despite the sanctions that the US returned in 2018 after illegally leaving a historic nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers.
“We are still critical of the Europeans’ inaction and cannot count on them much. We, ourselves, have to take matters further,” he said, but noted that Tehran would still engage in interactions with them.
Temperature Is Souring Between Iran And U.S.
This move by Iran has irked the United States. Now, the question is How will United States under Donald Trump will react to Iran’s efforts to undermine US sanctions by sending tankers to Venezuela? Will the U.S. take the bait? Is it a count down to a crisis? Will this conflict disrupt the maritime peace in the region?
With Inputs from PressTV