Iranian official says oil tanker attack won’t go unpunished | TribLIVE.com
U.S./World

Iranian official says oil tanker attack won’t go unpunished

Associated Press
1799596_web1_1799596-95a440b3fdaf4bd5be53b6dc83ac1d91
SHANA via AP
Iranian oil tanker Sabiti travels through the Red Sea on Friday, Oct. 11, 2019.

TEHRAN, Iran — A senior Iranian security official said Saturday that an attack on one of the country’s oil tankers won’t go unpunished, the official IRNA news agency reported.

Ali Shamkhani, secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, said a day after two missiles struck the Iranian tanker Sabiti as it traveled through the Red Sea off the coast of Saudi Arabia that “vicious behavior in international waterways will not go without a response.” He didn’t elaborate.

Shamkhani said an Iranian committee was able to glean some information about the attack from video images from the Sabiti.

Cabinet spokesman Ali Rabiei said, meanwhile, that Iran was investigating the case but “avoiding hastiness.”

The mysterious attack, which came amid months of heightened tensions at sea across the wider Mideast, damaged two storerooms aboard the tanker, Iranian officials said. Iran said the tanker will arrive at one of its ports in about 10 days.

Saudi Arabia, meanwhile, broke its silence on the incident, saying through its state-run news agency that authorities received an electronic message Friday from the captain of the Sabiti “that the front of the vessel has been broken, resulting in an oil spill in the sea from the cargo and tanks of the vessel.”

It said the Sabiti continued moving and turned off its electronic tracker without offering more information.

“The kingdom affirms its commitment to the security and safety of maritime navigation, as well as international agreements and norms,” the statement on the state-run Saudi Press Agency said.

Saudi Arabia said it would launch a pollution control response to the spilled crude oil from the Iranian tanker.

As Washington and Riyadh weigh a response to a drone-and-missile strike on the kingdom’s oil industry that shook global energy markets, Iran said any attack by the U.S. or Saudi Arabia will spark an “all-out war.”

The attacks come after President Donald Trump’s decision to unilaterally withdraw America from Tehran’s nuclear deal with world powers and impose crushing sanctions targeting Iran’s crude oil sales and shipments. Iranian officials warned for weeks that if they couldn’t sell their oil, neither would anyone else in the region.

Meanwhile, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan was scheduled to meet Iranian leaders during his Sunday visit to Tehran following a visit to Saudi Arabia.

In anticipation of Khan’s anticipated mediation between the regional rivals, Iran’s Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi said Iran was ready to enter a dialogue with the Saudis “with or without a mediator” to prevent misunderstandings that could result in third parties or foreign countries exploiting the regional situation.

Mousavi said Iran has always been open to those countries that seek “a safe region through good will.”

Categories: News | World
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.