A videograb shows a fire and smoke billowing from a ship in the Gulf of Oman.
An Israeli-owned ship, the MV HELIOS RAY, was hit by an explosion in the Gulf of Oman overnight Thursday and a US defence official said the blast left holes in both sides of the vessel's hull. The cause was not immediately clear.
An Israeli vessel apparently travelling from Saudi Arabia to Singapore was hit by an explosion in the Gulf of Oman, maritime security groups said Friday, adding there were no casualties.
The MV Helios Ray vehicle carrier "suffered an explosion within the Gulf of Oman", the Dryad Global maritime security group said.
The vessel was understood to have been travelling from Dammam, a port city in Saudi Arabia's Eastern Province, to Singapore when the blast occurred on Thursday northwest of Oman, it said.
VIDEO: 81-year-old German woman becomes TikTok fitness star
VIDEO: Russian diplomats push their way home with handcar out of NKorea
"The MV HELIOS RAY is owned by HELIOS Ltd an Israeli company registered in the Isle of Man," it added.
"The crew are understood to be uninjured. The vessel appears to be returning to (its) port of origin," Dryad said.
United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations (UKMTO) also reported the blast and said that the vessel, which it did not identify, and the crew were "safe".
"Investigations are ongoing," UKMTO said.
The Marine Traffic website said the Bahamas-flagged vessel had left Dammam on Wednesday and was due to arrive in Singapore next week.
Dryad suggested Iran could be behind the blast, noting the incident comes amid heightened tensions between Israel and Iran.
"Whilst details regarding the incident remain unclear it remains a realistic possibility that the event was the result of asymmetric activity by Iranian military," it said.
"Tensions between Israel and Iran remain fraught, especially in light of increased signs of rapprochement between Iran and the Biden administration," Dryad said.
According to the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) report, the UAE achieved a 90 percent score in the 'Service Availability and Sophistication' category.
The world cannot afford a major confrontation in the Gulf, UN chief Antonio Guterres warned on Thursday, as the Security Council prepared to meet to discuss suspected attacks on two oil tankers in a strategic sea lane.
The video, published on Thursday on the US Central Command's website, purports to show the crew of an Iranian patrol boat removing an object from the hull of a vessel whose markings appear to match archive footage and pictures of the Japanese-owned tanker Kokuka Courageous.
The total resident population is up 34.2 per cent since 2010 — an increase of 8.2 million people, of whom 4.8 million are Saudi nationals. Among Saudis, 63 per cent of the population is below the age of 30.
In the first quarter of 2023, the Ministry of Economy imposed fines worth Dhs65.9 million on 137 companies operating in the UAE’s designated non-financial business or professions (DNFBP) sector.
"These provocative and dangerous maneuvers are a source of problems for maritime security," said Mao Ning, a spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, stressing that "the United States must immediately stop these dangerous provocations."