Tanker Hijacked in Gulf of Oman

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An Asphalt tanker, ASPHALT PRINCESS. was allegedly “boarded and hijacked” by 9 armed men off Fujairah, UAE, Gulf of Oman.
This happened few hours after the British authorities warned of a potential attack and hijacking of a vessel in the Gulf of Oman approximately 60 miles east of the United Arab Emirates city of Fujairah, according to agency reports.
FleetMon online news reports that after the tanker was hijacked it started to move in the direction of Iran.
The report had it that there was no doubt already that the tanker was “hijacked” by Iranian forces, even as . Iran strongly denied any involvement in the mysterious incident.

Asphalt tanker ASPHALT PRINCESS, operated by UAE-based company, is an old rusty bucket of a very dignified age of some 55 years.
There’s no AIS records history, tanker emerged on the radars shortly before the “hijack” on Jul 29, drifting off Fujairah UAE – Sohar Oman, and went off radars again, to reappear on Aug 3, when she was “hijacked”, the report said.
Tanker’s value is something close to the value of scrap metal, she’s almost undoubtedly, in ballast, so what very stupid criminal will choose her as most suitable target for hijacking?
Iran has absolutely nothing to gain by this very stupid, senseless “hijack”.
As of 0230 UTC, tanker was adrift – “hijackers” obviously, don’t know what to do next, or are waiting for instructions, the report added.
.According to The Maritime Executive online, conflicting reports began emerging after the British warning with the authorities saying that the attack was being investigated as an assault by Iran or Iranian-backed militias, while Iranian authorities quickly dismissed the reports and said they were prepared to offer assistance to any vessel in distress.
The United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations (UKMTO) sent out a brief warning cautioning ships operating in the region.
They labeled the incident a potential hijacking and not an act of piracy. They initially said they had received reports from an unidentified third party and would be investigating and later upgraded their reports to a potential hijacking.


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