UK blames Iran for ‘callous’ drone attack that eliminated Brit on oil tanker

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    Iran has denied that it launched the drone attack on an oil tanker off the coast of Oman that killed two people.

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    The oil tanker was struck off Oman in what is believed to have actually been a drone strike (Picture: AP/Rex)

    The UK has actually implicated Iran of eliminating a Briton in an ‘unlawful and callous attack’ on an oil tanker in the Middle East.

    Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab stated it is ‘highly likely’ that Iran lagged the deadly drone attack on the ship, Mercer Street, off the coast of Oman on Thursday night.

    He knocked it as a ‘deliberate, targeted, and a clear violation of international law by Iran’, which eliminated 2 individuals who have actually not yet been called. One was a British nationwide and the other, from Romania, is comprehended to have actually been the ship’s captain.

    British maritime security company Ambrey verified that the attack, which saw a hole blasted through the vessel’s bridge and living quarters, eliminated among its workers aboard.

    It is the very first recognized deadly occurrence after years of attacks on industrial shipping in the area, which have actually been connected to stress with Iran over its scruffy nuclear offer.

    Iran rejected all participation after Israel’s prime minister Naftali Bennett straight blamed Tehran for the attack, amidst increased stress in the area and a war of words in between the 2 countries.

    Tonight, Mr Raab lastly broke his silence and backed Israel’s claims, promising to prepare a ‘concerted response’ with UK allies to the deadly occurrence.

    He stated in a declaration: ‘The UK condemns the illegal and callous attack dedicated on a merchant vessel off the coast of Oman, which eliminated a British and a Romanian nationwide.

    ‘Our ideas are with the loved ones of those eliminated in the occurrence.

    The Mercer Street, a Japanese-owned Liberian-flagged tanker managed by Israeli-owned Zodiac Maritime that was attacked off Oman coast as seen in Cape Town, South Africa, December 31, 2015.

    The Mercer Street is handled by Israeli-owned Zodiac Maritime and was struck by a blast on the bridge (Picture: Reuters)

    Iran has denied that it launched the drone attack on an oil tanker off the coast of Oman that killed two people. Picture: Datawrapper / Metro.co.uk

    The tanker was struck on Thursday night off the coast of Oman (Picture: Metro.co.uk/Datawrapper)

    Drones are seen during a large-scale drone combat exercise of Army of the Islamic Republic of Iran, in Semnan, Iran January 4, 2021.

    Iranian drones in a massive drone battle workout in January (Picture: Reuters)

    ‘We believe this attack was deliberate, targeted, and a clear violation of international law by Iran.’

    ‘Iran must end such attacks, and vessels must be allowed to navigate freely in accordance with international law,’ he continued.

    ‘The UK is working with our international partners on a concerted response to this unacceptable attack.’

    Mr Raab was supported by the United States’s Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, who stated he was ‘confident that Iran conducted this attack’.

    The Foreign Office stated the drone attack followed comparable attacks on 3 other Israeli-connected ships in the area because February.

    Officials stated that in the summer season of 2019 Iran was likewise ‘almost certainly responsible’ for attacks on 2 vessels in the Gulf of Oman.

    Tehran had actually been quiet till foreign ministry spokesperson, Saeed Khatibzadeh, branded Israel’s accusations as ‘baseless’ on Sunday.

    Antony Blinken and Dominic Raab at Downing Street, London, England, United Kingdom - 03 May 2021

    Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab’s remarks blaming Iran were backed by the United States’s Secretary of State Antony Blinken (left) (Picture: Tayfun Salci/Zuma Wire/Rex)

    While nobody has actually declared obligation for the attack, Israeli authorities declared Tehran released the drone strike.

    Iran’s Mr Khatibzadeh stated: ‘Such blame video games are absolutely nothing brand-new. Those who are accountable for this (attack) are the ones who made it possible for the Israeli program to set its foot in this area.

    ‘This is not strange, the well-known anti-Iran lobby in the US uses any opportunity to make… accusations against the Islamic Republic of Iran.’

    The Mercer Street is handled by London-based Zodiac Maritime, part of Israeli billionaire Eyal Ofer’s Zodiac Group.

    The tanker, which had actually been empty of freight, was on its method from Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, to Fujairah, United Arab Emirates, at the time of the attack, Zodiac Maritime stated.

    On Saturday, the United States navy stated its nuclear-powered carrier the USS Ronald Reagan and the directed rocket destroyer USS Mitscher were accompanying the Mercer Street back to a safe port.

    It included that navy explosive professionals think a drone assaulted the vessel.

    An authorities stated the occurrence blasted a hole through the top of the oil tanker’s bridge, where the captain and team command the vessel.

    The business did not supply additional information on the deaths of the 2 individuals onboard however stated it thought no other team members were hurt.

    Labour shadow foreign secretary Lisa Nandy tonight prompted the prime minister to ‘make it clear’ to Iran’s inbound president – who will be inaugurated next week – that ‘lawless actions will carry costs’.

    In a declaration, Ms Nandy stated: ‘This careless Iranian attack on a merchant vessel in global waters is an ostentatious breach of global law.

    ‘It is tragic that this has led to the death of two sailors, including one Briton. We send our deepest condolences to their families.’

    ‘This is the moment where Britain must show we are resolute in our determination to end this pattern of behaviour,’ she included.

    ‘The breakdown of a clear strategy to deal with Iran has not served the UK or our allies well in recent years. The Foreign Secretary must now make it a priority to pursue coordinated international efforts to tackle these actions by the Iranian Government.’

    Get in touch with our news group by emailing us at webnews@metro.co.uk.

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