Foreign Secretary Sujatha Singh met Iranian Ambassador Gholamreza Ansari in South Block on Tuesday for the second time since MV Desh Shanti was detained by Iranian authorities at Bandar Abbas. The two had last met over the issue on August 16.

The foreign secretary conveyed India's strong concern at the continued detention of its ship in Port Bandar Abbas and the government of India's expectation that the ship would be released at an early date and that crew members would be treated with all due consideration and courtesy in keeping with international norms.
"Officials of both sides will make another effort to resolve this issue amicably," said Syed Akbaruddin.

MT Desh Shanti, belonging to the Shipping Corporation of India (SCI), was detained by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) in the Persian Gulf on August 13.

Iran has demanded an anti-pollution undertaking from the ship's captain and SCI for releasing the vessel. Tehran has termed the detention as a technical and non-political issue.

According to Iranian media reports, the oil tanker had been impounded because it discharged its oily ballast water 30 miles away from Iran's Lavan Island in the Persian Gulf, causing a 10 mile long oil slick in the sea.

(Agencies)

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