Deteriorating Relations in Red Sea
An Iranian oil tanker in the Red Sea was hit by two suspected rockets on Friday off the coast of Saudi Arabia and oil is leaking from the vessel.
The National Iranian Tanker Company (NITC) said in a statement the hull of the ship sustained two separate explosions about 100km (60 miles) off the Saudi port city of Jeddah.
It said the blasts – one at 5am local time and the other at 5:30am (02:00-02:30 GMT) – were “probably caused by missile strikes”.
“All the ship’s crew are safe and the ship is stable too,” said NITC, the tanker’s owner, adding those on board were trying to repair the damage.
The state-owned company said contrary to reports, “there is no fire aboard the ship and the ship is completely stable”.
“Experts believe it was a terrorist attack,” Iran’s Students News Agency (ISNA) reported.
There was no immediate acknowledgement from Saudi Arabia about the blasts.