Latest on Tanker Attacks South of the Strait of Hormuz

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

June 14, 2019

© SOMATUSCANI/ Adobe Stock

© SOMATUSCANI/ Adobe Stock

U.S. President Donald Trump blamed Iran on Friday for attacks on two oil tankers at the entrance to the Gulf despite Tehran's denials, stoking fears of a confrontation in the vital oil shipping route.

Here are the latest developments:
* U.S. President Donald Trump blames Iran for Thursday's attacks and says any bid to close the Strait of Hormuz would not last long
* The U.S. military releases a video saying it shows Iran's Revolutionary Guard drawing up to side of the Japanese-owned Kokuka Courageous tanker and removing an unexploded mine from its hull
* The Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman says accusing Iran is "convenient" for U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and other U.S. officials, adding Iran is responsible for security in the Strait of Hormuz
* Germany says U.S. video not enough to apportion blame.
* The European Union and China issue calls for restraint from all sides.
* Iran says it has dispatched experts to assess whether rescued crew - Iranian TV showed 23 crew believed to be from the Front Altair - could return to the vessel
* The U.S. Navy says 21 crew from the Kokuka Courageous were rescued by a Dutch tug and transferred to USS Bainbridge.
* Norway's Frontline, owner of the Front Altair, says a fire aboard the ship, which was carrying naphtha, has been extinguished
* Owner Kokuka Sangyo Co says two "flying objects" damaged the Kokuka Courageous but there was no damage to its cargo of methanol
* Dutch marine engineer Boskalis says it has been appointed to salvage both tankers 

(Reuters, Editing by Edmund Blair)

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