The Iranian oil tanker which has been detained off Gibraltar since early last month is now departing the British territory.

Refinitiv shipping data shows that the vessel suspected of breaching US sanctions is moving away from the British territory.

Iran’s ambassador to Britain Hamid Baeidinejad earlier tweeted: “With the arrival of two specialised engineering teams to Gibraltar… the vessel is expected to leave tonight”.

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The Adrian Darya-1 – previously known as the Grace 1 – has been in Gibraltar since 4 July amid speculation that it planned to transport its cargo to Syria, in breach of European Union sanctions.

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The detention of the vessel prompted Iran to retaliate by seizing the British-flagged oil tanker Stena Impero, heightening already increased tensions in the region.

Earlier, Iran threatened to dispatch its naval fleet to collect the vessel.

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“The era of hit and run is over,” said Iran’s navy commander Rear Admiral Hossein Khanzadi.

He added: “If top authorities ask the navy, we are ready to escort our tanker Adrian,” the Mehr news agency reported.

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