Published: Fri, October 11, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Iran tanker hit by suspected missile strikes near Saudi port

Iran tanker hit by suspected missile strikes near Saudi port

The tanker's crew wasn't hurt in the incident that took place near Jeddah, the largest port in the Red Sea that serves as a maritime gateway to Saudi Arabia.

The reported attack comes after the US has alleged that in past months Iran attacked oil tankers near the Strait of Hormuz, at the mouth of the Persian Gulf, something denied by Tehran.

The statement said the blasts were "probably caused by missile strikes".

Iranian state TV identified the ship as the oil tanker Sinopa.

"There is no fire aboard the ship, it said, adding that the vessel is "completely stable".

All reports said the reported explosion happened off the coast of Jiddah on the Red Sea.

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The blast caused heavy damages to the tanker, according to the semiofficial ISNA news agency.

The rocket attack comes after Saudi Arabia's oil supply came under an attack by drones and cruise missiles on September 14, cutting in half the Saudi oil production.

'Experts believe it was a terrorist attack, ' a source told Iranian news agency ISNA. The U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet, which oversees the Mideast, says it was aware of the incident, but declined to immediately comment further.

The attack was claimed by Yemen's Iran-backed Shi'ite Huthi rebels, but Saudi Arabia, the United States, and Western European countries have blamed Iran.

Yemen's Houthi group claimed responsibility for the attacks, but a USA official said they originated from southwestern Iran, while Middle East Eye reported they had been undertaken by Iranian drones which flew from southern Iraq.

Iran has denied involvement in all these incidents.

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