DUBAI: A damaged Japanese tanker arrived on Sunday at a UAE anchorage site after it was rocked by explosions in Gulf waters as Saudi Arabia accused arch-rival Iran of being behind the attack.
The Kokuka Courageous was carrying highly flammable methanol through the Gulf of Oman on Thursday when it came under attack along with the Norwegian-operated Front Altair — the second assault in a month in the strategic shipping lane.
The crew, who remained on board, were “safe and well”, it said, according to a statement from the ship’s owner.
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A damage assessment and preparations for transferring the ship’s cargo would start “once the port authorities have completed their standard security checks and formalities”, it added.
BSM Ship Management had said earlier Kokuka Courageous was heading towards the Kalba anchorage on the eastern coast of the UAE, facing the Gulf of Oman.
The other ship, the Front Altair, has left Iran’s territorial waters, multiple sources said on Saturday.
It was “heading toward the Fujairah-Khor Fakkan area in the United Arab Emirates”, the ports chief of Iran’s southern province of Hormozgan told the semi-official news agency ISNA.
A spokeswoman for Frontline Management, the Norwegian company which owns the ship, said “all 23 crew members of the tanker departed Iran” and flew to Dubai on Saturday.