Iranian Oil Tankers Go Dark With 6 Weeks to Go to Sanctions

Iranian ship transponders clearly are being shut off, to avoid detection.

Iranian Oil Tankers Go Dark With 1 1/2 Months to Go to Sanctions

Iran’s oil tankers are starting to disappear from global satellite tracking systems with just under six weeks to go until U.S. sanctions are due to hit the country’s exports, making it harder to keep track of the nation’s sales.

No signals have been received by shore stations or satellites from 10 of the Persian Gulf nation’s crude oil supertankers for at least a week, according to tanker tracking data compiled by Bloomberg. The most likely explanation is that the vessels’ transponders have been switched off, making it more difficult to track the their movements.

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It's not the first time they do that as shown by this WSJ article from July 2017 :

https://www.wsj.com/articles/ships-exporting-iranian-oil-go-dark-raising-sanctions-red-flags-1499333402

They start to play hide and seek to avoid sanctions. I'm sure a wide rage of tactics will, be used to circumvent the sanctions.

An Iranian oil tanker can load in Iran then switch off the transponder and when its switched on again the tanker is empty. Where is the oil ? Unloaded in an Indian or Chinese port ? Or transferred to another tanker in high seas?

The US administration in charge of enforcing the sanctions will not have an easy task.

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Is GPS the only way of tracking ships?  Seems like there should be other technology?

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even simpler technology - bills of lading :-)

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