Tanzania says investigating Iran tankers accusation

Reuters News
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Posted: Jul 05, 2012 5:48 AM
Tanzania says investigating Iran tankers accusation

DAR ES SALAAM (Reuters) - Tanzania said on Thursday it was investigating whether it had reflagged any oil tankers from Iran and that it would strip the vessels of the Tanzanian flag if that proved to be the case.

Howard Berman, the ranking member of the U.S. House Committee on Foreign Affairs, has accused Tanzania of reflagging at least six and possibly as many at 10 tankers owned by the National Iranian Tanker Company, saying Tanzania could face U.S. sanctions for the practice.

"If it is confirmed that the ships flying Tanzania's flag are indeed from Iran, we will take steps to deliberately obliterate the registration," Foreign Affairs Minister Bernard Membe told reporters.

(Reporting by Fumbuka Ng'wanakilala; Editing by David Clarke and Andrew Heavens)