Two mariners were killed on a ship managed by Israeli businessman Eyal Ofer’s shipping company in the Northern Indian Ocean on Thursday night.
The attack Thursday night targeted the tanker which was just northeast of the Omani island of Masirah, over 300 kilometers southeast of Oman’s capital, Muscat.
London-based Zodiac Maritime, part of Israeli billionaire Eyal Ofer’s Zodiac Group, said the attack killed two crew members, one from Britain and other from Romania.
It did not name the victims, nor provide details what happened in the attack. It said it believed no other crew members on board were harmed.
Late Friday, Zodiac Maritime said the tanker was sailing under the control of her crew “to a safe location with a U.S. naval escort,” Lloyd’s List reported. The company did not provide further details.
An unnamed Israeli official claimed, without providing evidence, that Iran used a drone to attack the vessel.
“There is an Iranian terrorist attack here, two innocent people were killed,” the anonymous source told Israel TV station Channel 13. “The Iranians attacked the ship with an unmanned aircraft. An innocent ship with innocent dead. ”
According to Channel 13, the senior official claimed “the Romanian killed was the captain of the ship and the British was a security guard.” The company is not aware of any other injuries.
The assault was reported to be the worst case of maritime violence against a ship in the region since 2019.
The U.S., Israel and others have blamed the attacks on Iran amid the unraveling of Tehran’s nuclear deal with world powers.