UPDATE: Nineteen Indian nationals are on board the vessel Stena Impero which has been taken by Iran. The Indian Mission in Tehran is in touch with the Iranian authorities and trying to ascertain the facts. The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said, "We are ascertaining further details. Our Mission is in touch with the Government of Iran to secure the early release and repatriation of Indian nationals."
Indian nationals are among the 23 people who were onboard the UK flagged oil tanker which was seized by Iran on Saturday, said cargo vessel owner Stena Bulk. Bulk also said that the vessel is no longer under the control of the crew and remain uncontactable.
"There have been no reported injuries and the safety and welfare of our crew remain our primary focus," Stena Bulk said in a statement. The 23 people on board are of Indian, Russian, Latvian and Filipino nationality, the statement said.
The Swedish owners of the Stena Impero had said earlier that the vessel had come under "attack" in the Strait of Hormuz. Stena Bulk and Northern Marine Management had said in a statement that it "can confirm that... our managed vessel Stena Impero was attacked by unidentified small crafts and a helicopter while transiting the Strait of Hormuz while the vessel was in international waters"."We are presently unable to contact the vessel which is now tracking as heading north towards Iran," the statement had said.
Meanwhile, United States President Donald Trump said that it proves that Iran is nothing but trouble. “This only goes to show what I’m saying about Iran. Trouble. Nothing but trouble,” he said. “It goes to show you I was right about Iran.”
Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) said that its navy had captured the British-flagged oil tanker, Stena Impero. The IRGC accused the tanker of "violating international regulations. Iran's Revolutionary Guards added that they had confiscated the British tanker in the strategic Strait of Hormuz for breaking "international maritime rules".
The Stena Impero tanker "was confiscated by the Revolutionary Guards at the request of Hormozgan Ports and Maritime Organisation when passing through the strait of Hormuz, for failing to respect international maritime rules," the Guards' official website Sepahnews announced. The tanker "was led to the shore and handed over to the organisation to go through the legal procedure and required investigations," it said.
(With agency inputs)