Unic Press UK: Two oil vessels – a Norwegian-owned MT Front Altair and a Japanese-owned Kokuka Courageous – loaded with petroleum products were allegedly attacked Thursday in the Gulf of Oman [also known as the Sea of Oman], causing the MT Frint Altair to burn/send thick black plumes into the atmosphere.
— Press TV (@PressTV) June 13, 2019
The incident occurred in the Gulf of Oman that links a strategic oil transit route Strait of Hormuz with the Arabian Sea. And, a detailed cause of the fire has yet to emerge.
Reacting on Twitter to the incident, which occurred at a time the Japanese prime minister Abe Shinzo was in Iran for bilateral talks, the Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif, whose country, going by a video posted on the website of the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB), is believed to have rescued the crew-members of the ill-fated vessel, said:
“Reported attacks on Japan-related tankers occurred while PM @AbeShinzo was meeting with Ayatollah @khamenei_ir for extensive and friendly talks. Suspicious doesn’t begin to describe what likely transpired this morning. Iran’s proposed Regional Dialogue Forum is imperative.”
Meanwhile the United States says Iran deserves blame for the fire outbreak.
“Taken as a whole, these unprovoked attacks present a clear threat to international peace and security, a blatant assault on the freedom of navigation and an unacceptable campaign of escalating tension by Iran,” the U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said.