The UK authorities have officially accused Iran of being responsible for a drone attack on a ship in the Middle East, leaving a British citizen dead.
The statements came a few days after an oil tanker linked to an Israeli billionaire
reportedly came under fire off the coast of Oman in the Arabian Sea.
As a result, two people were killed during the attack, including a British citizen.
The UK Foreign Office described the incident as “deliberate, targeted, and a clear violation of international law by Iran”.
British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said his country and its allies planned a coordinated
response over the strike Thursday night on the oil tanker Mercer Street.
“Iran must end such attacks, and vessels must be allowed to navigate freely in accordance
with international law. The UK is working with our international partners on a concerted
response to this unacceptable attack,” he added.
For his part, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said there was “no justification for this
attack, which follows a pattern of attacks and other belligerent behaviour.”
“Upon review of the available information, we are confident that Iran conducted this attack,
which killed two innocent people, using one-way explosive UAVs, a lethal capability it is
increasingly employing throughout the region,” Blinken said in a statement.
“There is no justification for this attack, which follows a pattern of attacks and other
belligerent behaviour. But these actions threaten freedom of navigation through this crucial
waterway, international shipping and commerce, and the lives of those on the vessels involved,” Blinken said.
“We are working with our partners to consider our next steps and consulting with
governments inside the region and beyond on an appropriate response, which will be forthcoming. We once again offer our condolences to the families of the victims,” the
Iran Denies Involvement
The US statements came after Israel blamed Iran for the attack, putting further pressure on Tehran.
However, Tehran denied responsibility for the attack.
The strike on Mercer Street marked the first-known fatal attack after years of assaults on
commercial shipping in the region linked to tensions with Iran over its tattered nuclear deal.