Rouhani hints at “tanker swap”

Iranian president Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday that he would be willing to consider a swapping of detained tankers if that would help de-escalate the current tension around the Strait of Hormuz.

“We do not seek the continuation of tension with some European countries. If Britain steps away from the wrong actions in Gibraltar, they will receive an appropriate response from Iran.”

Iranian Tanker Grace 1 was detained off Gibraltar earlier this month. Last Friday Iran captured UK-flagged chemical/oil products tanker Stena Impero as it transited the strait between the UAE and Iran.

Iraq’s prime minister, Adil Abdul-Mahdi, met Rouhani in Tehran this week. Last week the UK offered to release Grace 1 if Iran guaranteed that the ship would not be delivering oil to Syria, which is subject to EU sanctions.