South Korea says ship, captain detained in Iran have been released

A South Korean ship and its captain detained in Iran since January have been launched on Friday, South Korea’s overseas ministry mentioned.

The chemical tanker was seized within the Strait of Hormuz off Oman by Iranian authorities who accused it of polluting the waters with chemical substances.

Iran agreed to free all the ship’s 20 crew members aside from the captain in February, however the difficulty triggered a diplomatic spat after Iran demanded that Seoul launch $7 billion in funds frozen in South Korean banks due to US sanctions. The ministry made no point out of the demand in its assertion.

“The captain and sailors are in good health, and it’s been confirmed that the ship and its cargoes had no problems,” the ministry mentioned. “The ship departed Iran after completing administrative procedures.”

Tehran has denied allegations that the seizure of the tanker and its crew constituted hostage-taking, claiming it was Seoul which was holding the Iranian funds “hostage”. The freezing of the funds is linked to US sanctions which Washington reimposed on Tehran in 2018 after then-President Donald Trump withdrew from Iran’s 2015 nuclear take care of world powers.

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