Iran denies it attacked Israeli-owned ship in Gulf

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Iran has rejected what it says are Israel’s unfounded allegations that Iran’s Revolutionary Guard attacked an Israeli-owned cargo ship close to the Gulf of Oman final month.

Iran’s U.N. ambassador in a letter circulated Tuesday accused Israel of “enjoying the sufferer to distract consideration away from all its destabilizing acts and malign practices throughout the area.”

Ambassador Majid Takht Ravanchi mentioned within the letter to the U.N. Safety Council that the incident “has all of the traits of a sophisticated false flag operation by actors with a purpose to pursue their malign insurance policies and to advance their illegitimate targets.”

He was responding to a letter to the council from Israel’s U.N. Ambassador Gilad Erdan. It accused Iran’s Revolutionary Guard of attaching an explosive system to the Israeli-owned cargo vessel Helios Ray in worldwide waters close to the Gulf of Oman on Feb. 25. The vessel was en route from Saudi Arabia to Singapore.

The explosion brought on “extreme harm, forcing the ship to return to the port of Dubai to make sure the security of the crew,” Gilad mentioned within the letter, additionally circulated Tuesday.

Israel has accused archenemy Iran of growing nuclear weapons, a cost Tehran denies, and of supporting hostile militant teams throughout the area, comparable to Hamas in Gaza and the Lebanese Hezbollah. Israel has acknowledged finishing up a whole bunch of airstrikes on targets linked to Iran and its proxies in Syria.

Gilad’s letter cited earlier Iranian assaults on civilian ships, together with its seizure of a South Korean flagged tanker in Gulf waters in early January and on 4 industrial vessels in Might 2019 within the territorial waters of the United Arab Emirates east of the port of Fujairah.

Within the tense summer time of 2019, the U.S. navy blamed Iran for explosions on two oil tankers close to the Strait of Hormuz, one of many world’s most strategic delivery lanes. The U.S. additionally had attributed a sequence of different suspected assaults to Iran, together with using limpet mines — designed to be hooked up magnetically to a ship’s hull — to cripple the 4 oil tankers off the close by Emirati port of Fujairah.

The Israeli ambassador mentioned the Feb. 25 assault and former assaults “show but once more that Iran will use any means to destabilize the area” and he urged the Safety Council to sentence Iran’s violations of the U.N. Constitution “and maintain the Iranian regime answerable for this assault and for destabilizing the regime.”

Iran’s Ravanchi countered that the “Israeli regime” have to be held accountable for all of its “crimes, brutalities and threats … particularly its occupation of Palestine and elements of different international locations, in addition to its persistent navy adventurism in such a unstable area because the Center East.”

He mentioned Israel should “even be reminded that it’ll bear all penalties because of any attainable miscalculation.”

The Feb. 25 blast got here as Iran has more and more breached its 2015 nuclear accord with world powers in an try to stress U.S. President Joe Biden to grant the sanctions reduction it acquired underneath the deal that former President Donald Trump deserted almost three years in the past.

Iran additionally has blamed Israel for a latest sequence of assaults, together with a mysterious explosion final summer time that destroyed a complicated centrifuge meeting plant at its Natanz nuclear facility and the killing of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, a high Iranian scientist who based the Islamic Republic’s navy nuclear program twenty years in the past.

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