“We believe that the sense of responsibility must prevail and that freedom of maritime navigation must be respected,” said Nasser Bourita, in Rabat on July 23.
Rabat – “Morocco is closely following recent developments in the area and calls for the respect of the freedom of maritime navigation in the Strait of Hormuz and of international law,” said Bourita during a joint press briefing with Guinea’s Foreign Minister, Mamadi Toure. This is Toure’s first visit to Morocco since his appointment.
Bourita stated that “the area is under significant pressure and experiences several tensions.”
“We believe that the sense of responsibility must prevail and that freedom of movement and maritime navigation must be respected,” he reiterated.
Bourita specified that “Morocco, like all countries, is concerned about the escalating tensions in the Strait of Hormuz in recent weeks.”
He further explained that the Kingdom’s concern comes as the country has special relations with the Gulf region.
The minister also mentioned that “Morocco has repeatedly condemned acts which threaten the stability and security of this region and has affirmed its solidarity with the Arab Gulf countries, whenever their security and the tranquility of their citizens have been threatened.”
During the month of July, the Strait of Hormuz witnessed escalating tensions and provocative moves.
On July 11, The United Kingdom‘s government claimed that five Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) vessels had unsuccessfully attempted to hinder the passage of a British oil tanker through the Strait.
The UK government issued a statement, on July 10, saying that the Iranian ships withdrew after receiving “verbal warnings” from a British warship accompanying the tanker.
On July 18, the United States announced that a US Navy ship took “defensive action” and “destroyed” an Iranian drone in the Strait of Hormuz, after the drone threatened the vessel. However, Iran dismissed the claim.
On July 19, the Iranian Revolutionary Guards abseiled from helicopters and seized a British tanker in the Strait of Hormuz. The seizure came in response to the British capture of an Iranian tanker two weeks earlier.
Britain called on Iran to release the British-flagged tanker and its crew, describing the seizure of the Stena Impero oil tanker as illegal.