Shots fired at tankers in the Gulf of Oman Ship’s crew


DUBAI, July 5 (Reuters) – Shots were fired at a tanker in sensitive Gulf waters on Wednesday, but the ship and crew are safe, a British maritime security agency said, the latest in a string of seizures or attacks on merchant ships in the Golf Golf since 2019.

The ship was off the coast of the Omani capital Muscat when the shots were fired on Wednesday, the Royal Navy-affiliated United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations (UKMTO) said in a suspicious approach report.

Maritime security firm Ambrey said the vessel was a Greek-owned, US-managed, Bahamas-flagged oil tanker.

Refintiv ship turn data shows that Richmond Voyager, a very large crude oil carrier managed by Chevron, matching the location and description of UKMTO and Ambrey. It had previously docked at Ras Tannoura in eastern Saudi Arabia.

Ambrey said the ship is now en route from the United Arab Emirates to Singapore. It increased speed and changed course in response to the incident, Ambrey said, citing his own investigation.

Chevron could not be immediately reached for comment.

Since 2019, there have been a number of attacks on shipping in the strategic Gulf waters amid tensions between the US and Iran.

Iran seized two oil tankers within a week just over a month ago, the US Navy said.

About a fifth of the world’s supply of crude oil and oil products flows through the Strait of Hormuz, a bottleneck between Iran and Oman, according to data from analytics firm Vortexa.

(Reporting by Lisa Barrington and Jonathan Saul, Editing by Peter Graff)

(c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2023.

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