Two Iranian oil tankers have been spotted near the Strait of Hormuz, off the coast of a major port city in the country.
Satellite images show that the Advantage Sweet and Niovi tanks are anchored south of Bandar Abbas, in the Iran province of Hormozgan.
The two vessels may have been taken by Iran for different reasons, but it is not clear why.
On 27 April, Iran seized the Marshall Islands flagged Advantage Sweet, which was staffed by 23 Indians, one Russian and travelled through the Gulf of Oman.
The tracking data of the Advantage Sweet did not show any unusual behavior on its journey.
When the ship was taken, it was transporting crude oil from Kuwait for American energy company Chevron.
Iran has in the past made similar claims to cover up the fact that vessels were taken and used as pawns to negotiate with the West.
The Niovi, a Panama flagged tanker, was captured by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard paramilitary on Wednesday, as it left Dubai, United Arab Emirates bound for Fujairah, on the UAE’s eastern coast.
United Against a Nuclear Iran has been tracking the crude oil shipments sanctioned by Tehran. Claire Jungman is the chief of staff for the organization. She said that she “strongly suspects” the seizure was related to a dispute about a shipment Iranian oil.
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Iran claims to have seized Niovi in response to an unspecified court ruling in Tehran.
According to the Greek Coast Guard, the Niovi’s crew consisted of Greek, Filipino and Sri Lankan sailor.