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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Offical: Fuel cargo to Venezuela seized by US never belonged to Iranian

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Tehran, Aug 19, IRNA -- Head of the Presidential Office Mahmoud Vaezi dismissed the US claim of confiscating four Iranian tankers and said it is every country's right to buy and sell oil in international waters.

"The cargo of four tankers seized by the United States last week en route to Venezuela was no longer Iranian property", Vaezi told reporters after the cabinet session in Tehran on Wednesday.

Neither the ship nor the cargo belonged to Iran, said the Head of the Presidential Office, adding that the cargo had been delivered to Venezuela on international trade scheme.

Vaezi added that the fuel cargo seized by the US was not Iranian but its oil had been sold to customers and the payment was received for it.

The US newspaper Wall Street Journal on Friday morning carried an "exclusive" report quoted from American officials who claimed the tankers were seized within the past few days without the use of force.

The newspaper claimed, " The Trump administration has for the first time confiscated cargo in vessels allegedly loaded with Iran fuel in violation of sanctions, U.S. officials said, as it steps up its campaign of maximum pressure against Tehran.".

Claiming that "4 Iranian tankers carrying fuel to Venezuela have been seized by the US," it said, "The Luna, Pandi, Bering and Bella, were seized on the high seas in recent days and are now en route to Houston."

Iran's Ambassador to Venezuela Hojat Soltani on Aug 14, reacted to the false news on the seizure of four Iranian tankers by the US and termed it as yet another lie by the propaganda machine of the Imperialism of America.

In a twitter post on Friday, the Ambassador rejected the fake news that the US has seized four tankers carrying Iranian oil.

On Tuesday Aug 18 too, Iran Petroleum Minister Bijan Zangeneh derided the US over fabricated seizure of Iranian oil tankers, saying Washington aims to "produce a victory for itself."

Neither the ship, nor the cargoes belong to Iran, said the minister adding that the cargo had been delivered to Venezuela on international trade scheme of Freight on Board of the ship at sea (FOB).


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