Iran Guards seize foreign vessel carrying ‘smuggled’ fuel

A view of the foreign oil tanker seized by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards on Sunday. (Tasnim News Agency)
A view of the foreign oil tanker seized by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards on Sunday. (Tasnim News Agency)
Short Url
Updated 28 January 2024
Follow

Iran Guards seize foreign vessel carrying ‘smuggled’ fuel

A view of the foreign oil tanker seized by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards on Sunday. (Tasnim News Agency)
  • Iranian forces regularly target tankers illegally transporting fuel in the Gulf
  • US military has recently intensified its presence in the Gulf, accusing Iran of seizing vessels, or attempting to, in the strategic shipping lane

TEHRAN: Iran’s Revolutionary Guards seized Sunday a foreign oil tanker carrying around two million liters of “smuggled fuel” near the country’s southern coast, local media reported.
“A foreign vessel with the flag of a country from Oceania was identified with two million liters of smuggled diesel,” reported Tasnim news agency.
The ship “was seized in accordance with a court order,” the agency said, quoting Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps commander Haidar Honaryan.
Fourteen crew members were also arrested, he noted, saying they were nationals of “two Asian countries,” without specifying which.
Iran, a major oil producer, has among the cheapest petrol prices in the world, which encourages fuel trafficking.
Iranian forces regularly target tankers illegally transporting fuel in the Gulf.
In September, Iran seized two oil tankers flying the flags of Panama and Tanzania and arrested their crews for allegedly carrying smuggled fuel in the Gulf.
The US military has recently intensified its presence in the Gulf, accusing Iran of seizing vessels, or attempting to, in the strategic shipping lane.
On July 6, the US military said the Guards had seized a commercial ship in the Gulf, one day after having accused Iranian forces of carrying out two similar attempts off the coast of Oman.
Tehran said the intercepted ship had been transporting more than one million liters of “smuggled fuel.”


Israel’s Gaza war has negatively impacted human rights, says US report

Israel’s Gaza war has negatively impacted human rights, says US report
Updated 4 sec ago
Follow

Israel’s Gaza war has negatively impacted human rights, says US report

Israel’s Gaza war has negatively impacted human rights, says US report
  • Rights issues include credible reports of unlawful killings, enforced disappearances and torture, says report
  • Israeli military's conduct has come under scrutiny as its forces have killed over 34,000 in Gaza since Oct. 7

WASHINGTON: The war between Israel and Hamas that has killed tens of thousands of Palestinians in Gaza and resulted in a severe humanitarian crisis has had “a significant negative impact” on the human rights situation in the country, the US State Department said in its annual report on Monday.

Significant human rights issues include credible reports of arbitrary or unlawful killings, enforced disappearance, torture and unjustified arrests of journalists among others, said the State Department’s 2023 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices.

The report added that the Israeli government has taken some credible steps to identify and punish the officials who may have been involved in those abuses.

Israel’s military conduct has come under increasing scrutiny as its forces have killed 34,000 Palestinians in Gaza, according to the enclave’s health authorities, many of them civilians and children. The Israeli-occupied Gaza Strip has been reduced to a wasteland, and extreme food shortages have prompted fears of famine.

Israel launched its assault in response to a Hamas attack on Oct. 7, in which Israel says 1,200 people were killed.

Rights groups have flagged numerous incidents of civilian harm during the Israeli army’s offensive in Gaza, as well as raised alarm about rising violence in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, where Palestinian Health Ministry records show Israeli forces or settlers have killed at least 460 Palestinians since Oct. 7. But so far the Biden administration has said it has not found Israel in breach of international law.

Washington gives $3.8 billion in annual military assistance to its longtime ally. Leftist Democrats and Arab American groups have criticized the Biden administration’s steadfast support for Israel, which they say provides it with a sense of impunity.

But this month, President Joe Biden for the first time threatened to condition support for Israel, and insisted that it take concrete steps to protect humanitarian aid workers and civilians.


Israel’s Gaza war has negatively impacted human rights, says US report

Israel’s Gaza war has negatively impacted human rights, says US report
Updated 23 April 2024
Follow

Israel’s Gaza war has negatively impacted human rights, says US report

Israel’s Gaza war has negatively impacted human rights, says US report
  • The Israeli-occupied Gaza Strip has been reduced to a wasteland, and extreme food shortages have prompted fears of famine

WASHINGTON: The war between Israel and Hamas that has killed tens of thousands of Palestinians in Gaza and resulted in a severe humanitarian crisis has had “a significant negative impact” on the human rights situation in the country, the US State Department said in its annual report on Monday.
Significant human rights issues include credible reports of arbitrary or unlawful killings, enforced disappearance, torture and unjustified arrests of journalists among others, said the State Department’s 2023 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices.
The report added that the Israeli government has taken some credible steps to identify and punish the officials who may have been involved in those abuses.
Israel’s military conduct has come under increasing scrutiny as its forces have killed 34,000 Palestinians in Gaza, according to the enclave’s health authorities, many of them civilians and children. The Israeli-occupied Gaza Strip has been reduced to a wasteland, and extreme food shortages have prompted fears of famine.
Israel launched its assault in response to a Hamas attack on Oct. 7, in which Israel says 1,200 people were killed.
Rights groups have flagged numerous incidents of civilian harm during the Israeli army’s offensive in Gaza, as well as raised alarm about rising violence in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, where Palestinian Health Ministry records show Israeli forces or settlers have killed at least 460 Palestinians since Oct. 7. But so far the Biden administration has said it has not found Israel in breach of international law.
Washington gives $3.8 billion in annual military assistance to its longtime ally. Leftist Democrats and Arab American groups have criticized the Biden administration’s steadfast support for Israel, which they say provides it with a sense of impunity.
But this month, President Joe Biden for the first time threatened to condition support for Israel, and insisted that it take concrete steps to protect humanitarian aid workers and civilians.


Nobel laureate urges protest against Iran’s ‘war on women’

Nobel laureate urges protest against Iran’s ‘war on women’
Updated 23 April 2024
Follow

Nobel laureate urges protest against Iran’s ‘war on women’

Nobel laureate urges protest against Iran’s ‘war on women’
  • Narges Mohammadi issues plea from Evin prison amid new crackdown by Tehran’s morality police

JEDDAH: Jailed Iranian Nobel laureate Narges Mohammadi urged Iranians on Monday to protest against the clerical regime’s “war against women” amid a new crackdown forcing women to cover their heads.
Mohammadi, who is being held in Evin prison in Tehran, called on Iranian women to share their stories of arrest and sexual assault at the hands of the authorities.
Iran launched a nationwide operation this month to enforce the wearing of the headscarf. Women have been arrested and taken to police stations by the morality police, and the Farsi hashtag meaning “war against women” has been trending on social media.
“People of Iran, I ask you, artists, intellectuals, workers, teachers, and students ... inside and outside the country to protest against this war against women,” Mohammadi said in a message from inside the prison. “Do not underestimate the power of sharing your experiences. Doing so will expose the misogynistic government and bring it to its knees.” She accused the authorities of bringing “a full-scale war against all women to every street in Iran.”
Mohammadi said she had been joined in jail by Dina Ghalibaf, a journalist and student who was arrested after accusing security forces on social media of putting her in handcuffs and sexually assaulting her during a previous arrest at a metro station. “For years, we have witnessed many women who have endured assault, abuse, and beatings by government agents,” Mohammadi said.
Mohammadi, 52, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize last year in recognition of her campaign for human rights in Iran, which has led to her spending much of the past two decades in and out of jail. She has been imprisoned since November 2021 and has not seen her husband and twin children, who live in Paris, for several years.


Bahrain’s crown prince discusses developments in Gaza with US secretary of state

Bahrain’s crown prince discusses developments in Gaza with US secretary of state
Updated 23 April 2024
Follow

Bahrain’s crown prince discusses developments in Gaza with US secretary of state

Bahrain’s crown prince discusses developments in Gaza with US secretary of state
  • Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad reiterates his nation’s ‘firm stance’ in support of the Palestinian cause; Antony Blinken thanks Bahrain for its contributions to maritime security

LONDON: Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad of Bahrain and the US secretary of state, Antony Blinken, on Monday discussed the latest developments in Gaza, along with other regional and global issues of common interest.

During their telephone conversation, the Prince “reviewed the strength of the Bahrain-US partnership, highlighting the importance of bolstering joint coordination to achieve common goals and interests,” the Bahrain News Agency reported.

During their talks about the current situation in the Middle East, and in particular the conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza, the crown prince reiterated Bahrain’s “firm stance toward the Palestinian cause and its unwavering commitment to reaching a peaceful, lasting and fair solution in support of Palestinians’ legitimate right to establish an independent state with East Jerusalem as its capital.”

He also highlighted the important need to protect civilians and deescalate the violence in Gaza, which he said threatens regional security and stability.

The US State Department said both officials “reinforced their shared commitment to preventing the spread of regional conflict,” and Blinken thanked Bahrain for its contributions to maritime security.

They also discussed ways in which “cooperation under the Comprehensive Security Integration and Prosperity Agreement continues to strengthen the strategic partnership” between their countries, spokesperson Matthew Miller added.


Israeli protesters burn symbolic Passover table outside PM’s house

Israeli protesters burn symbolic Passover table outside PM’s house
Updated 23 April 2024
Follow

Israeli protesters burn symbolic Passover table outside PM’s house

Israeli protesters burn symbolic Passover table outside PM’s house
  • Israel has killed 34,151 Palestinians, mostly women and children, according to the Hamas-run territory’s health ministry
  • Outside Netanyahu’s house, demonstrators, some of whom were relatives of hostages, set fire to a symbolic seder table after laying out empty places on another table to mark the hostage’s continued captivity

CAESAREA, Israel: Israeli protesters burnt a symbolic Passover table outside Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s house at the start of the Jewish holiday on Monday, accusing him of failing hostages in Gaza.
Hundreds of protesters gathered outside the gates leading to the house in the coastal town of Caesarea, calling for the release of hostages abducted by Palestinian militants on October 7 and criticizing Netanyahu’s leadership.
Israeli officials say 129 captives remain in the Gaza Strip after the Hamas attack, including 34 whom the military says are dead.
Their plight has cast a pall over this year’s Passover, also known in Hebrew as the “holiday of freedom.”
Guy Ben Dror said he was protesting against “the worst prime minister in the history of Israel.”
“He doesn’t want the hostages back because he doesn’t want the war to end or he’ll go to prison,” said the 54-year-old investment firm worker.
Passover commemorates the liberation of the Jewish people from slavery in Egypt. A ritual meal, known as a seder, takes place on the first evening, with participants sitting around a tray laden with symbolic food.
Outside Netanyahu’s house, demonstrators, some of whom were relatives of hostages, set fire to a symbolic seder table after laying out empty places on another table to mark the hostage’s continued captivity.
“We are here to share our feelings, our grief, our sorrow with the families of the kidnapped,” said demonstrator Yael Ben Porat.
“I didn’t want to celebrate this holiday when we have so many of our people, our brothers and sisters kidnapped over there in Gaza,” the 62-year-old lawyer said.
“All of us believe he is responsible for the horrible disaster of October 7,” she said, accusing Netanyahu of failures in negotiating their release.
“This night is only bitter, no freedom,” she said.
In a post on X marking the start of Passover on Monday, Netanyahu insisted “our resolve remains unyielding to see all hostages back with their families.”
“Tonight, we think of those who cannot join their families at the seder table. Their absence strengthens our resolve and reminds us of the urgency of our mission. We will not rest until each one is freed,” he said.
“The days ahead will see increased military and diplomatic efforts to secure the freedom of our hostages,” he said.