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Iran ‘hijacks’ tanker in Gulf of Oman - Government & Private Jobs in Pakistan

Iran ‘hijacks’ tanker in Gulf of Oman

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Iranian-backed forces were suspected of seizing an oil tanker in the Persian Gulf last night, just days after Iran was blamed for a drone attack on another tanker that killed a British crew member.

The Royal Navy’s UK Maritime Trade Operations [UKMTO] agency warned of a suspected “hijacking” incident near the Emirati port of Fujairah but did not give further details.

The hijacked ship was believed to be the Asphalt Princess, a Panama-flagged vessel. Armed soldiers had reportedly stormed on board.

The asphalt and bitumen tanker was believed to be travelling to Sohar, a port on Oman’s northern coast, when it was attacked at the mouth of the Strait of Hormuz on Tuesday afternoon.

Satellite-tracking data for the vessel showed it slowly heading toward Iranian waters off the port of Jask early on Wednesday, according to MarineTraffic.com.

The incident comes after Dominic Raab, the Foreign Secretary, accused Iran of a “deliberate, targeted, and a clear violation of international law” following a drone attack on the Liberian-flagged tanker Mercer Street last week.

Britain, the United States and Israel say they are confident that Iran was behind the attack, which killed a British security guard, and have vowed to retaliate.

There are growing concerns about increasingly aggressive Iranian actions in the Middle East, with Britain, America, Israel and other nations in secret discussions about how to retaliate. A British special forces team is understood to have been sent to the region and there is growing speculation an offensive cyber attack against Iran is being considered.

Israel’s prime minister on Tuesday called for an international response to the attack on the MV Mercer Street but warned he would be prepared to launch a unilateral strike if an alliance took too long to form.

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