Published: Sat, June 15, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Saudis Agree With US That Iran Behind Suspected Attack on Oil Tankers

Saudis Agree With US That Iran Behind Suspected Attack on Oil Tankers

Tehran has denied all those charges.

President Trump's claim that the oil tanker attack near the Strait of Hormuz had "Iran written all over it" was met with skepticism in Europe, with Britain's left-wing opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn asking to see "credible evidence".

The U.S. blames Iran for the attack, and the military has provided video that it says shows people on an Iranian patrol boat removing an unexploded limpet mine from the hull of the Kokuka Courageous tanker.

Asked how he planned to address Tehran and prevent any further incidents, Trump told Fox News: "We're going to see".

Brown said a large tug boat from the UAE was now moving the Kokuka toward Fujaira, which may take several days. "The most likely is that Iran is sending a message to warn the USA and its allies in the region that it has the ability to retaliate against tightening energy sanctions".

After Pompeo's comments accusing Iran, Zarif tweeted, "That the U.S. immediately jumped to make allegations against Iran - w/o a shred of factual or circumstantial evidence - only makes it abundantly clear that the #B_Team is moving to #PlanB: sabotage diplomacy - including by @AbeShinzo - and cover up its #EconomicTerrorism against Iran".

21 May: A previously unknown Iraqi group claims responsibility for the rocket fired into the Green Zone.

Secretary General Ahmed Aboul Gheit noted after meeting with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres at UN headquarters in NY today that there are conflicting reports about how Thursday's tanker incidents occurred.

"Obviously that can only be done if there is an independent entity that verifies those facts".

Mr Hunt said Britain's assessment "leads us to conclude that responsibility for the attacks nearly certainly lies with Iran".

The two alleged attacks against USA assets by Iran and an Iranian proxy group are the first against the US military to be confirmed since the US began building up forces in the region last month.The White House accelerated the dispatch of an aircraft carrier to the Gulf region in May, charging that Iran was planning an offensive against USA forces and interests in the region.

The Kokura Courageous and Front Altair tankers were attacked in worldwide waters Thursday, prompting the evacuation of both vessels and raising fears of further confrontation in one of the world's most strategic shipping lanes at a time of high tensions between the U.S. and Iran.

Iran responded to the latest threats from Trump and the Pentagon calling them "alarming and worrisome".

The crew was taken into Iranian custody after a civilian craft, the Hyundai Dubai, rescued them.

Again, Iran may very well have been behind the attacks; a case can be made that it has a strong motive.

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Oil prices surged on June 13, reflecting the jitters, although they have since given up some of those gains.

Jakob Larsen, BIMCO's head of maritime security said the attacks were an urgent concern to the industry.

The Singapore-bound tanker, loaded with methanol from Saudi Arabia and Qatar, sent out a distress call Thursday morning and the U.S. destroyer responded.

China, which has close energy ties with Iran, urged both sides to exercise restraint and resolve their differences through dialogue.

"We consider it necessary to refrain from hasty conclusions", the Russian foreign ministry said, calling for a thorough global investigation.

He also said that any move to close the Strait of Hormuz, through which the world's biggest oil exporter Saudi Arabia and other Gulf producers ship crude, would not last long. The missile did not hit the drone, the official said.

This time, Japanese and Norwegian-owned oil tankers were the targets.

The resulting blaze was quickly extinguished, although one crew member suffered minor injuries.

American guided-missile destroyer Bainbridge rescued the 21 sailors from the Kokuka Courageous, the other vessel that was attacked on June 13, according to USA officials.

Japan condemned the attacks, which occurred as Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited Iran in an effort to ease tensions in the region.

Guterres, who condemned the attacks on the tankers, was speaking on Friday alongside Arab League Secretary-General Gheit after the pair met.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Thursday that Washington had irrefutable evidence of Iranian involvement in the tanker attacks.

Mr Pompeo also believes Iran's attack on four other tankers last month were an attempt to inflate worldwide oil prices.

No other state or non-state actor "could plausibly have been responsible", the statement added.

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