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Guterich calls on all states to ensure freedom of navigation in the Gulf region

Guterich calls on all states to ensure freedom of navigation in the Gulf region

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterich called on all states to ensure freedom of navigation in the Gulf region, said Farhan Haq, his deputy spokesman.

"The Secretary-General's call was very clear, he called on all countries to ensure freedom of navigation everywhere, including the Strait of Hormuz," Haq said in a briefing on Friday.

Guterich wants to ensure that all countries seek to reduce the escalation in the Gulf region and "avoid any steps that will lead to further tension in the future." "The Secretary-General has clearly indicated that the last thing the region needs is a new confrontation," he said. "This is our position and we hope that all countries will respect the basic laws on freedom of navigation."

The situation in the Gulf witnessed a significant escalation after the authorities of the Gibraltar region of Britain, in late July, detained an Iranian oil tanker for allegedly transporting a shipment of crude oil to Syria (in violation of European sanctions against Damascus) .

A week later, CNN quoted a Pentagon source as saying that several boats, probably Iranian, approached a British tanker on its way out of the Gulf via the Strait of Hormuz and demanded that it stop near Iranian territorial waters. The channel said that the British "Montrose" frigate escorting the tanker issued a verbal warning to the Iranians, prompting them to desist from their intention to detain the British carrier.

The Iranian Foreign Minister, Mohammad Jawad Zarif, denied the authenticity of the news, pointing out that the aim of spreading it is to escalate tension in the region. The Iranian Revolutionary Guard said its ships would not hesitate to detain any foreign vessel in Iran's territorial waters if orders were issued.

Britain has sent two additional warships to the Gulf under the pretext of ensuring freedom of navigation there, while the United States called on the world to take action "response" to the actions of Iran.

The Pentagon also said Washington hoped to establish a special force to protect merchant ships in the Gulf within two weeks.

Source: Novosti

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