Iran warns of 'prompt, strong' response over oil tanker incident

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, August 3, 2021
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Iran's Foreign Ministry dismissed on Monday British and U.S. allegations regarding a reported drone attack on an Israeli-managed oil tanker in the north of the Arabian Sea, and warned it would "promptly and strongly" respond to "any possible adventure."

"The Islamic Republic of Iran will not hesitate for an instant in protecting its security and national interests, and will respond promptly and strongly to any possible adventure," Saeed Khatibzadeh, spokesman for the ministry, was quoted as saying by the ministry's official website.

On Sunday, British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab accused Iran of "launching a deliberate, targeted drone attack on the Mercer Street tanker," which caused the death of two crew members. Later in the day, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken repeated Raab's allegations.

Khatibzadeh regretted the accusation, and urged London and Washington to present "any evidence for their bogus claims."

"It is a pity that these countries have remained supportively silent about the terrorist attacks and acts of sabotage against Iranian trade vessels in the Red Sea and international waters," he added.

Zodiac Maritime, a London-based firm owned by the Israeli billionaire Eyal Ofer, said in a statement on Friday that the attack on its oil tanker Mercer Street on July 29 killed a Romanian national and a British national.

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said on Sunday that Israel had "intelligence evidence of Tehan's involvement in the incident."

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