The U.S. Navy’s 5th Fleet says it is assisting two oil tankers targeted in the “reported attack on tankers in the Gulf of Oman.”
The Bahrain-based force did not elaborate on who attacked what it described as two oil tankers. It also did not blame anyone for the attack. The 5th Fleet said it had sent naval forces to the area to assist the two vessels. One has been identified as the MT Front Altair, a Marshall Islands-flagged crude oil tanker. A private maritime intelligence firm says the Front Altair is adrift and on fire.
A South Korean company confirms that all the 23 crew aboard one of the two oil tankers reportedly attacked near the Strait of Hormuz have been rescued by one of its cargo vessels sailing in the area. The Seoul-based Hyundai Merchant Marine Co. on Thursday cited crew of its Hyundai Dubai cargo vessel as saying that there were three rounds of explosion sounds at the MT Front Altair before it sent an emergency distress call. The company says it’s the operator of the Hyundai Dubai vessel. A company statement says the 30,000-ton-class Hyundai Dubai vessel sent a lifeboat to rescue MT Front Altair’s 23 crew members before embarking them on the cargo vessel. It says the Hyundai Dubai vessel later handed over the rescued crew members to an Iranian rescue boat. It says the MT Front Altair, built in 2016, had reportedly been on its way to Japan with naphtha, a petrochemical product.