1253 GMT August 15, 2022
The Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman said ancient ties between Iran and Greece are based on mutual respect and must not be “hampered by deeply shortsighted miscalculations”.
Saeed Khatibzadeh made the remarks in a late Saturday tweet in reaction to the seizure of two Greek oil tankers by the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) on Friday in the Persian Gulf.
He gave the assurance that the ships’ crew members are safe and in good health.
His tweet read: “Our ancient ties with Greece & its great people have always been based on mutual respect.
“Our ties must not be hampered by deeply shortsighted miscalculations, including highway robbery on the command of a 3rd party.
“Tankers crew are safe and in good health.”
In a statement on Saturday, Iran’s Ports and Maritime Organization (PMO) announced that the Greek oil tankers’ crew members have not been detained and are in full health.
It added that the two tankers have been impounded due to committing maritime violations, noting that the issue is under investigation based on the available evidence and documents.
The PMO gave the assurance that the required judicial measures will be taken once the investigations are completed and the needed evidence is gathered.
The statement added all crew members are being protected aboard the ships and according to international law.
The IRGC on Friday announced it had seized two Greek oil tankers in the Persian Gulf over violations days after a Russian-operated ship was captured by Greece in its territorial waters and its Iranian crude cargo was confiscated by the United States.
Earlier in the day, Iran’s Nour News, affiliated with the country’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC), reported that the country was going to take “punitive action” against Greece over the tanker’s seizure.
On Wednesday, the PMO issued a statement, describing the U.S. seizure of the Iranian oil cargo from the ship in Greece’s territorial waters as an “act of piracy” that was “in violation of international standards”.