A new video posted by the website of the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) shows crewmembers of a tanker hit earlier on Thursday by a suspicious blast in the Sea of Oman, after they are rescued by Iranian relief teams.
The video refutes false reports by some media outlets claiming that Iran avoided helping the sailors working on the vessel.
The IRIB website cited an informed source at Jask Port, where the 23 sailors have been transferred, as saying that the Front Altair tanker had loaded a cargo of gasoline at Qatar’s al-Ruwais Port. The vessel caught fire while sailing to the south of Jask Port, it added.
The source described the crew as 11 Russians, 11 Filipinos, and one Georgian national, adding that they were all rescued by an Iranian vessel and were in “full health.”
The second tanker had loaded a cargo of methanol in Saudi Arabia and its crewmembers were rescued by a Dutch vessel, it concluded.
One of the tankers was sailing under a Panama flag and another bore the Marshall Islands’ ensign.
Earlier, the director general of Ports and Maritime Department in the southern Iranian province of Hormozgan, Allah-Morad Afifipour, refuted reports that one tanker had sunk.
Iran has called the incident suspicious as it coincided with a meeting between Japan’s visiting Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei.