United States Navy commandos seized a diverted oil tanker in the Mediterranean waters southeast of Cyprus on Monday morning, thwarting an attempt by a breakaway Libyan militia to sell its contents on the black market, the Pentagon said. No one was hurt in the operation, the Pentagon said in a statement.

The diverted tanker, called the Morning Glory, had sailed into the Libyan port of Sidra under a North Korean flag but North Korea disavowed the ship and denied having provided any authorization. News reports have said it was operated by a company based in Alexandria, Egypt, and that after leaving Libyan waters it appeared to have sailed the Mediterranean in search of a buyer for its oil.

In a statement early Monday morning, the Pentagon said that the Libyan and Cypriot governments had requested American help in seizing control of the tanker. President Obama authorized the operation just after 10 p.m. Sunday night in Washington, the statement said. Within a few hours a Navy SEAL team on the guided missile destroyer Roosevelt boarded and took control of the tanker, “a stateless vessel seized earlier this month by three armed Libyans,” the statement said. […]