Middle EastTankers

Explosions hit Iranian suezmax in possible terrorist attack

A fully laden Iranian suezmax belonging to NITC has been hit by two explosions in the Red Sea, while en route to Syria, with vast quantities of crude gushing from its breached hull. 

The 1999-built Sabiti is the third Iranian ship to run into trouble in the area in the last six months with two other tankers breaking down near Saudi Arabia.

Local media in Tehran are reporting the suezmax was struck near Jeddah by two missiles with the ship’s owner suggesting the tanker had been hit by a terrorist attack. The ship has been stabilised by its crew, who are all reported to be safe.

In the last six months tanker tensions between Iran and the west have seen a number of ships hit by explosives, and other vessels detained.

News of this latest attack around one of the world’s key oil arteries is expected to send red hot tanker freight rates even higher today, with the $200,000 a day landmark being broken for VLCCs.


Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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