Update: 12:37 | 15/01/2021
Two Vietnamese crew members on a South Korean-flagged tanker detained by Iran earlier this month are doing well, the foreign affairs ministry says.
"The Vietnamese Embassy in Iran has contacted the two Vietnamese crew members. Both are in stable health and good state of mind," ministry spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang said at a press meet Thursday.
A South Korean-flagged tanker vessel which was seized by Iran is seen in Gulf, Iran, January 4, 2021.
Embassy staff would visit the two crew members next Monday and ensure needed citizen protection measures, she added. Vietnamese agencies in both South Korea and Iran have requested local authorities to ensure the health and safety of both Vietnamese on the detained ship.
On January 4, the Hankuk Chemi, which was carrying around 7,200 tons of ethanol from Arab Saudi’s Jubail City to UAE’s Fujairah emirate, was detained by Iran in Gulf waters. Two of the ship’s 20 crew members are Vietnamese, while others are nationals of Indonesia, Myanmar and South Korea.
The seizure happened amid tensions between Tehran and Seoul over Iranian funds frozen in South Korean banks due to U.S. sanctions, Reuters reported.