'HOSTILE ACT' Iran seizes British oil tanker in the Gulf with 23 crew on board days after clash with Royal Navy
[The Sun UK] A BRITISH oil tanker with 23 crew on board has been seized by Iranian troops in the Gulf, the country's state TV said.

The Government's Cobra committee is holding an emergency meeting in Whitehall tonight after the Stena Impero was halted in the Strait of Hormuz by what the ship's owners called a "hostile action".

A second oil tanker, the the British-operated, Liberian-flagged Mesdar, turned sharply north towards Iran's coast on Friday afternoon after passing westward through the Strait of Hormuz into the Gulf, according to Refinitiv tracking data.

There was no immediate word from the Guards about the second tanker or from the operator of the second tanker on what had prompted the change in direction along the vital international oil shipping route.

Ship tracking data showed the Impero changed course while sailing to Saudi Arabia. Shipping line Northern Marine said it had lost contact with the crew as reports claimed it was now heading to an Revolutionary Guard base in Iran.

Iranian state-controlled TV claimed its had seized the ship because it was "violating international maritime rules".

Defence Secretary Penny Mordaunt has been briefed, Sky News reports.

The Ministry of Defence said: "We are urgently seeking further information and assessing the situation following reports of an incident in the Gulf."

CNN: 2nd Tanker seized

Iran has seized a second tanker, US official says

Iran has also seized a second tanker, the Liberian-flagged MV Mesdar, according to a US official. Two more US officials tell CNN that, according to maritime intelligence reports, the indication is the Mesdar has been seized.

Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps announced earlier that its navy has captured a British-flagged tanker ‘Stena Impero’ in the Strait of Hormuz.

The order of seizure of the two ships isn’t clear at this time.
Update at 5:05 pm EDT: The Telegraph is live-blogging the story.

Posted by: Frank G 2019-07-19