Greek court overturns decision allowing U.S. seizure of Iranian oil cargo

Greek court overturns decision allowing U.S. seizure of Iranian oil cargo

A Greek court on Wednesday overturned an earlier court ruling that allowed the confiscation by the United States of part of a cargo of Iranian oil on an Iranian-flagged tanker off the Greek coast, three sources familiar with the matter said.

The incident had led to an angry response by Iran, with Iranian forces last month seizing two Greek tankers in the Gulf after Tehran warned it would take “punitive action” against Athens. 

Iran had also appealed the original court decision, according to reports. 

It was not immediately clear if the U.S. or Greek governments would challenge the ruling, which was given in the Appeals Court of the region of Chalkis. 

The case arose when Greek authorities in April impounded the Iranian-flagged Lana, formerly Pegas, with 19 Russian crew members on board, near the coast of the southern island of Evia due to European Union sanctions.

The ship was soon released due to complications regarding its ownership. The United States in May confiscated part of the Iranian oil cargo held onboard and transferred it to another ship, following the initial Greek court ruling. 

In a separate case, Greek authorities later seized Lana again, acting on an interim court order over alleged debts to another shipping company.



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