Tests have shown that tanker Grace 1 (IMO 9116412) seized in Gibraltar last week was fully loaded with crude oil, the Gibraltar administration has said.
The Grace 1 was seized in Gibraltar last week off the coast of Gibraltar for trying to take oil to Syria in violation of EU sanctions. Iran eventually admitted ownership of the shipment, but denied that it was heading for Syria.
Gibraltar said that “Her Majesty’s Government of Gibraltar can now confirm, after having received the results of comprehensive laboratory testing, that … the Grace 1, which was detained in the early hours of Thursday morning, is loaded to capacity with crude oil. The results of these tests … contradict the statements of some commentators from outside the jurisdiction who had speculated that the cargo on the vessel was not crude.”
The Gibraltar government said the Grace 1 was detained when it freely navigated into British Gibraltar’s territorial waters, having previously left the international waters of the Strait of Gibraltar on a pre-arranged call for provisions and spare parts.
1997-built, Panama-flagged, 156,880 gt Grace 1 is owned by Grace Tankers Ltd care of manager Iships Management Pte Ltd of Singapore.