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US visa ban or Iran Tanks may affect Indian Crew mostly

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Washington: The US is gravely disappointed with the UK after a Gibraltar court allowed the release of an Iranian tanker suspected of hauling oil to Syria, and threatened sanctions against ports, banks and anyone else who does business with the ship or its crew. US officials said the court order rewards Iranian terrorism and Tehran will interpret the action as appeasement.

The court’s decision Thursday to release the Grace 1 was a missed opportunity and the Trump administration hopes that the UK government and authorities in Gibraltar will reconsider. The Grace 1 had been held in Gibraltar after British forces seized it last month on suspicion that it was hauling Iranian crude oil to Syria. The U.S. Department of Justice is seeking to block the vessel’s release, but the Gibraltar Supreme Court on Thursday said American authorities hadn’t filed the appropriate legal application.

The two administration officials said the Grace 1 should now be considered a pariah. Anyone that does business with the ship, its crew or its owners, or provides financial transactions or port services to the vessel could be liable for evading U.S. sanctions, the officials said. Iran said the ship wouldn’t sail to a sanctioned destination and is now rushing to return it to international waters before the U.S. finds a way to prolong its six-week detention.

That warning seemed to be part of an American effort to persuade the Grace I’s crew, most of who are from India, not to return to the ship. “The maritime community should be aware that the U.S. government intends to revoke visas held by members of such crews,” Ortagus’s statement added.

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Nasa finds Chandrayaan-2 lander Vikram with help of Indian engineer

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New York: NASA has found the crash site and debris of India’s Chandrayaan-2 Vikram moon lander following a tip from an Indian space enthusiast who examined pictures of the area of the moon taken by a US orbiting camera.

The site was located by Shanmuga Subramanian, who on his own scoured the pictures taken by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbital Camera (LROC), NASA and Arizona State University announced on Monday confirming the find.

The first mosaic image of the likely crash site made from pictures taken by the LROC on September 17 was downloaded by several people to look for signs of the Vikram, NASA said.

One of them, Subramanian, contacted the LROC project with a positive identification of debris, it said.

Arizona State University (ASU), where the LROC project is located, said: “After receiving this tip, the LROC team confirmed the identification by comparing before and after images.”

When the images for the first mosaic were acquired on September 17, the impact point was poorly illuminated and could not easily be identified, it said.

But two image sequences were acquired on October 14 and 15, and on November 11 were better.

The November mosaic shows best the impact crater, ray and extensive debris field. The three largest pieces of debris are each about 2×2 pixels and cast a one pixel shadow.

The three largest pieces of debris are each about 2×2 pixels and casts a one pixel shadow.

The university said that based on Subramanian’s tip, the LROC team scoured the surrounding area in the new mosaics and found the impact site and the debris field.

The impact site is located at 70.8810 degree S, 22.7840 degrees E, at an elevation of 834 metres, it said.

“The debris first located by Shanmuga is about 750 metres northwest of the main crash site,” ASU said.

Vikram lost contact with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) following its launch from Chandraayan-2 moon orbiter on September 6 when it tried to make a softlanding near the moon’s south pole.

In a statement NASA said: “Despite the loss, getting that close to the surface was an amazing achievement.”

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