Sunday, 03 Mar, 2024


Israeli-owned ship hit in suspected Iran drone attack

International Desk  |
Update: 2023-11-26 11:06:30
Israeli-owned ship hit in suspected Iran drone attack CMA CGM Symi is seen at port in Valencia, Spain, Oct. 22, 2023. A container ship owned by an Israeli billionaire came under attack by a suspected Iranian drone. (Photo via AP)

An Israeli-owned cargo ship was damaged in a suspected drone attack by Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps in the Indian Ocean, a US defence official said on Saturday.

"We are aware of reports that there was a suspected IRGC-initiated Shahed-136 UAV (that) struck a civilian motor vessel in the Indian Ocean," the official said, confirming the attack on Friday and adding that "the ship incurred minor damage" and there were "no injuries".

Maritime security company Ambrey said the Malta-flagged, French-operated container ship was reportedly damaged when the unmanned aerial vehicle exploded close to it.

"The vessel was managed by an Israeli-affiliated company, which was assessed to be the reason why it was targeted," Ambrey said, adding that in the days before the attack, the ship's tracking transmissions had stopped shortly after departing port in the United Arab Emirates.

The reported attack comes almost a week after Yemen's Iran-backed Huthi rebels seized an Israel-linked cargo ship in the southern Red Sea.

Ambrey said in a separate incident on Friday the Huthis cautioned a tanker southwest of Yemen's Red Sea port city of Hodeida "to change course and warned that an attack would follow if they did not follow the instructions".

The security firm said the warning was issued several times, adding it is "likely a Huthi operation is imminent".

The Huthis, declaring themselves part of the "axis of resistance" of Iran-affiliated groups, have launched a series of drone and missile strikes targeting Israel since October, following an unprecedented attack by Hamas militants on Israel.

Israel has vowed to "crush" Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, after the Palestinian militants killed about 1,200 people and took around 240 hostages on October 7, according to Israeli authorities.

Gaza's Hamas government says nearly 15,000 people have been killed in Israeli aerial bombardment and ground operations in the Palestinian territory since then.

On Monday, the Huthi rebels pledged further maritime attacks until Israel halts its Gaza campaign.

Source: France 24

BDST: 1106 HRS, NOV 26, 2023

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