Tehran took the action in response to Washington abandoning the nuclear deal past year and hitting its crucial oil exports and financial transactions with biting sanctions. Iran denies the vessel was headed to Syria, where the government of President Bashar al-Assad is an ally of Tehran. Britain warned Iran to "immediately stop and reverse all activities" violating the deal and Germany said it was "extremely concerned".
Britain's seizing of an Iranian oil tanker last week was a threatening act that will not be tolerated, Iran's Defence Minister Amir Hatami said on Monday in a speech broadcast live on state television.
Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Monday that British seizure of an Iranian oil tanker in Gibraltar constitutes a concrete example of "piracy" which has been done on behalf of the B-Team.
General Amir Hatami added that this action "is against global norms and is a sort of piracy on the high seas".
"It is a kind of marine piracy", he added, addressing a ceremony marking the delivery of new patrol boats to Iran's marine police.
A detachment of Royal Marines from 42 Commando boarded the vessel in a joint operation with the Royal Gibraltar Police. "She is heavy", they said in a tweet on Thursday.
Gibraltar's Supreme Court ruled Friday that the tanker can be held for 14 more days, the territory's attorney general said.
British Royal Marines seized the supertanker Grace 1 on Thursday for trying to take oil to Syria in violation of European Union sanctions in a move which drew Tehran's fury and could escalate its confrontation with the West.
Days after the United Kingdom - at U.S. request - seized a tanker filled with Iranian oil near Gibraltar, a United Kingdom tanker in the Persian Gulf has made an abrupt u-turn and abandoned its mission to transport Iraqi oil to Europe.
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