S. Korean delegation to negotiate release of ship in Iran

TEHRAN, Jan. 05 (MNA) – A South Korean delegation is to pay a visit to Iran to negotiate the release of a Korean oil tanker seized by the IRGC.

"A delegation, to be headed by the director-general of the related region, will be dispatched to Iran at the earliest date possible in efforts to resolve the matter through bilateral negotiations with the Iranian side," foreign ministry spokesperson Choi Young-sam said in a press briefing, Yonhap reported.

The delegation will be led by Koh Kyung-sok, director-general of the ministry's African and Middle Eastern affairs, he added. 

First Vice Foreign Minister Choi Jong-kun is also expected to address the issue when he travels to Tehran early next week, according to the ministry.

His planned three-day trip, starting Sunday, had already been arranged prior to the incident, mainly to discuss an agreement to unlock the Iranian money in Seoul that has been frozen under sanctions against Tehran, the same report confirmed.

The navy of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps of Iran announced on Monday that a South Korean oil tanker named "Hankok Chimi" had been detained in the Persian Gulf for repeated violations of environmental laws.

Iranian Ministry of Foreign Spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh commented on the incident saying that  "Iran, like other countries, is sensitive to similar violations, especially pollution of the marine environment, so the country will deal with such violation through legal channels.

MNA/PR

News Code 168119

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