Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned on Saturday of retaliatory measures towards the United States if Washington prompted issues for tankers carrying Iranian gas to Venezuela.
A flotilla of 5 tankers carrying Iranian gas for gasoline-starved Venezuela is approaching the Caribbean, with the primary anticipated to reach the nation’s waters on Sunday, in line with Refinitiv Eikon monitoring knowledge.
“If our tankers in the Caribbean or anywhere in the world face trouble caused by the Americans, they [the US] will also be in trouble,” Rouhani stated in a phone dialog with Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani , the semi-official information company Mehr reported.
“Iran will never initiate a conflict,” Rouhani stated. “We have always the legitimate right to defend our sovereignty and territorial integrity and to serve our national interests, and we hope that the Americans will not commit an error.”
Iran oil cargo: Venezuelan army to escort gas tankers
Iran is supplying about 1.53 million barrels of gasoline and alkylate to Venezuela, in line with each governments, sources and calculations made by TankerTrackers.com primarily based on the vessels’ draft ranges.
The shipments have prompted a diplomatic standoff between Iran and Venezuela and the US as each nations are underneath US sanctions. Washington is contemplating measures in response, in line with a senior US official, who didn’t elaborate on any choices being weighed.
The US just lately beefed up its naval presence within the Caribbean for what it stated was an expanded anti-drug operation. But a Pentagon spokesman, Jonathan Hoffman, stated on Thursday he was not conscious of any operations associated to the Iranian cargoes.
Venezuela’s defence minister has stated its army will escort the Iranian tankers as soon as they reach the nation’s unique financial zone (EEZ).
TankerTrackers.com estimated the lead vessel within the flotilla, the Fortune, would arrive in Venezuela’s EEZ between 9pm and 11pm native time (01:00-03:00 GMT), in line with time and velocity calculations.
Iran seized a British-flagged tanker within the Gulf final 12 months after British forces detained an Iranian tanker off the territory of Gibraltar. Both vessels had been launched after a months-long standoff.