Gibraltar has defended its actions in seizing a VLCC suspected of breaching European Union sanctions against Syria.

In a statement on Friday, it said the decision to detain the 301,000-dwt Grace 1 (built 1997) on Thursday was based solely on it having reasonable grounds to believe that the vessel was committing a breach.

“There has been no political request at any time from any government that the Gibraltar government should act or not act, on one basis or another,” it said.