Tel Aviv Accuses Iran of Blasting Israeli Ship in Gulf of Oman

2021-02-28 - 9:38 am

Bahrain Mirror: Israeli defence minister Benny Gantz said on Saturday his "initial assessment" was that Iran was responsible for an explosion on an Israeli-owned ship (MV Helios Ray) in the Gulf of Oman.

The is not the first of its kind accusation against Tehran, as Washington has previously accused it of carrying out a number of attacks on ships in strategic Gulf waters, including attacks on four ships. However, Tehran rejects and denies all these accusations

"Iran is looking to hit Israeli infrastructure and Israeli citizens," Gantz told the public broadcaster Kan. "The location of the ship in relative close proximity to Iran raises the notion, the assessment, that it is the Iranians."

"Right now, at an initial assessment level, given the proximity and the context - that is my assessment," Gantz said.

Israel's Kan broadcaster named the ship's owner as Rami Ungar and quoted him as saying: "The damage is two holes, diameter approximately 1.5 meters, but it is not yet clear to us if this was caused by missile fire or mines that were attached to the ship."

"There is no damage to the engine, and no casualties among the crew. We have no idea whether this was an incident that was past of the tensions between Iran and the United States and whether there is a link to the fact the ship's owner is Israeli," Kan reported Ungar as having said.

The incident occurred at 20:40 GMT on Thursday, UKMTO said, but it gave no details about a possible cause.

Maritime security firm Dryad Global said the ship was en route to Singapore from Dammam in Saudi Arabia.

The vessel is managed by Stamco Ship Management, Refinitiv ship tracking data showed. Stamco Ship Management declined to comment when contacted by phone by Reuters.

"Whilst details regarding the incident remain unclear it remains a realistic possibility that the event was the result of asymmetric activity by Iranian military," Dryad said in a report on the incident.

Refinitiv data shows the ship has set Dubai as its current destination.

Arabic Version

المصدر: Bahrain Mirror
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