A European-led mission for protection of Gulf waters expected to operate soon will be hosted by a French naval base in UAE, France’s defense minister said on Sunday. The decision came in the wake of the subsequent tanker attacks earlier this year in the region which triggered global diplomatic tension.
The United Arab Emirates joined the United States-led commission aiming to protect marine safety, navigation and worldwide trade. The Director of the International Security Cooperation Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation noted that this alliance adds to worldwide as well as local attempts to prevent threats to marine navigation and global trade, contributing to the conservation of international tranquility and safety and thus establishing the flow of energy supplies to the global economy.
Reuters reports that maritime security talks between Iran and the UAE were to begin on Tuesday, July 30, in light of the tension in the Strait of Hormuz, despite the fact that a Gulf official commented on the discussions as routine and technical.
In light of the ongoing tensions between the US and Iran following the two tanker attacks in Strait of Hormuz earlier in June, the United Arab Emirates said on Wednesday that clear and convincing evidence was needed in order to determine which state is to blame for the attacks.
Stability and energy security are paramount to economic growth and any attack on a single tanker is an assault on the entire international community, said Dr. Sultan bin Ahmad Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of UAE State and CEO of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC).
The product tanker ‘Kokuka Courageous’, one of the two ships that became subject of attacks on Thursday while transiting the Strait of Hormuz, is now safely under tow in the Gulf of Oman heading towards Khor Fakkan, UAE, the ship’s manager Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement (BSM) said in an official update Friday.
Two oil tankers were hit in a suspected attack in the Gulf of Oman Thursday morning, increasing alarmingly oil prices, amid an ongoing tension in the Middle East. The incident comes only a month after a similar incident in which four tankers in the region were struck.
The Norwegian Maritime Authority informs that in light of the sabotage act against four vessels off Fujairah port, the Maritime Security (MARSEC) adjusted the security levels in the area to ISPS1 and advise shipowners to carefully consider measures from ISPS2.
Preliminary findings of the investigation into the coordinated attacks on four oil tankers, that took place in the morning hours of 12 May off the port of Fujairah, revealed that these attacks were part of a sophisticated and coordinated operation carried out most likely a state actor.
According to Reuters, US National Security Adviser, John Bolton, commented that the naval mines that were used to attack oil tankers off the UAE were ‘almost certainly from Iran’. The UAE has not yet blamed anyone for the sabotage of four vessels, including two Saudi tankers, near Fujairah emirate, a major bunkering hub just outside the Strait of Hormuz.
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