Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif scoffs at claims that the United States has seized four Venezuela-bound Iranian tankers, clarifying that despite the rumors, the American act of piracy never involved any Iranian vessels.
“’Pirates of the Caribbean’ have their own judges and courts now,” Zarif tweeted on Saturday, apparently deriding the judgment underpinning the rumors and attempts at representing Iran as the vessels’ owner country.
“Sadly for them, stolen booty wasn’t Iran’s. Fuel was sold F.O.B. Persian Gulf,” he added. F.O.B. stands for freight on board, a shipping expression that, when used along the name of an actual place, shows what party actually bears responsibility for a given seaborne cargo.
“Ship and flag weren’t ours either,” Zarif reminded.
The Wall Street Journal had on Thursday cited US officials as saying that the US government had for the first time seized vessels allegedly carrying Iranian gasoline to Venezuela. It said the US had recently seized four vessels, called Luna, Pandi, Bering, and Bella, in the high seas and they were being transferred to Houston, Texas.
“Hollow, cheap propaganda doesn’t deflect from miserable failure of US diplomatic malpractice at UN,” the top diplomat noted.
The remarks echoed those made by President Hassan Rouhani earlier, in which the chief executive said that by manufacturing such reports, the US was trying to deflect attention from a historic defeat it suffered at the UN Security Council against Iran on Friday.
The episode saw 13 of the Security Council’s 15 members striking down a resolution forwarded by Washington that sought to prevent legal removal of an anti-Iran arms embargo that is expected to expire in October.