UPDATED 3:53 PM PT – Saturday, July 31, 2021
U.S. Naval explosive experts have been onboard an Israeli managed oil tanker after an attack on the ship killed two people. According to the Navy on Saturday, the ship named Mercer Street was being guided by a Navy aircraft carrier and guided missile destroyer to a safe port.
The tanker was targeted late on Thursday off the coast of Oman. Experts said initial indications pointed to a drone-style attack.
We extend our sincere condolences to the victims’ loved ones following the attack on the Mercer Street in the North Arabian Sea. We are deeply concerned by this attack. We are urgently working with our international partners to establish the facts and provide assistance.
— Ned Price (@StateDeptSpox) July 30, 2021
On Friday, Israel’s foreign minister blamed Iran for the attack. Iranian state television cited unnamed sources, who claimed the attack came in response to an Israeli attack in Syria earlier this month.