The Iranian tanker seized by British royal marines near Gibraltar in July on suspicion of carrying oil to Syria has left port.
Shipping data showed the Grace 1, renamed the Adrian Darya 1, leaving Gibraltar around 11pm on Sunday, and is believed to be heading to Kalamata in Greece.
Authorities in Gibraltar released the tanker last week but on Friday a federal court in Washington issued a warrant for its seizure, along with its cargo of 2.1 million barrels of light crude oil, and nearly $1m (£824,000).
However, on Sunday Gibraltar said it could not comply with that request because it was bound by EU law.
Washington had attempted to detain the ship on the grounds it had links to Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), which it has designated a terrorist organisation.
The release comes amid a growing row between Iran and the west after Donald Trump pulled Washington out of Tehran’s nuclear deal with world powers more than a year ago.
Shortly after the tanker was detained in early July near Gibraltar, a British overseas territory, Iran seized the British-flagged oil tanker Stena Impero in the Strait of Hormuz, which remains in the Islamic Republic.
Iran has warned the US against any new attempt to seize its tanker in open seas after it left Gibraltar.
Asked whether the US could renew its seizure request, Abbas Mousavi, a spokesperson for the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said: “Such an action … would endanger shipping safety in open seas. We have issued a warning through official channels, especially the Swiss embassy.”
Switzerland represents American interests in Iran, which has no diplomatic relations with the US.
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