- Iran Rescues 44 Sailors From Two Oil Tankers After Suspected Attack in Gulf of Oman − Reports
Reports about the incident emerged a month after an attack on four vessels off the Emirati coast, which UAE investigators blamed on an unspecified “state actor”. Iranian rescue services saved 44 sailors from tankers after a reported attack and took them to the Iranian port of Jask, the state-run IRNA news agency reported on Thursday. The US Navy’s 5th Fleet also said that it was assisting two oil tankers targeted in a “reported attack” near the Strait of Hormuz, after the vessels sent disstress calls.
It was not immediately clear who attacked the vessels, one of which has been identified as Front Altair, a crude oil tanker owned by Norway’s Frontline and carrying the flag of the Marshall Islands. According to shipping newspaper Tradewinds, Frontline’s oil tanker had been “torpedoed” off the coast of the Emirate of Fujairah. Taiwan’S energy firm CPC said it had suspicions that Front Altair, which was carrying 75,000 tonnes of naphtha, was hit by an unknown object.
Meanwhile, shipping company Bernhard Schulte said that its oil tanker Kokuka Courageous was also damaged in the incident. Kokuka was sailing from Saudi Arabia to Singapore with a cargo of methanol. “The hull has been breached above the water line on the starboard side,” the company said in a statement. “All crew are reported safe and only one minor injury reported.”
Eerlier in the day, Iran’s Press TV said that two successive blasts affected two oil tankers on Thursday morning in what it described as “attacks”. Norwegian newspaper Dagbladet quoted Oman authorities as saying that at least one tanker had been attacked in Iran’s territorial waters in the Gulf of Oman. Brent crude climbed 4.5 per cent in the wake of the reports.