Iran frees South Korean tanker Hankuk Chemi

Image: DM Shipping.

Crew of seized South Korean tanker said to be in good health after being confined to ship since 4th January.

Iran has released the 2020-built, 17,400-dwt Hankuk Chemi. The tanker was seized on 4th January over alleged pollution offences while in Iranian waters.

South Korea’s foreign ministry said in a Tweet that the crew of 20 are in good health and the vessel is now en route to Fujairah.

“It’s been confirmed the ship and its cargoes had no problems,” the statement said. “The ship departed Iran after completing administrative procedures.”

The allegations of pollution against the vessel were seen by many observers as a pretence and a retaliation for South Korea freezing billions of dollars of Iranian funds in South Korean banks, and ship owners DM-Shipping, have rejected the allegations.

Iran has denied any connection between the seizure of the vessel and the frozen funds.

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