Defense Minister Gantz: Iran may be behind explosion on Israeli ship in Gulf

Defense Minister Benny Gantz says Iran may be behind the explosion on an Israeli ship in the Gulf of Oman yesterday.

The Israeli-owned cargo ship in the Gulf of Oman anchored in Dubai on Saturday morning, after a blast on Friday forced the vessel to head to the nearest port.

In an interview with the Kan public broadcaster, Gantz says that the proximity between the location of the incident and the Islamic Republic raises concerns that it is responsible for the attack, but adds that the investigation has not yet been completed.

“We need to continue investigating,” he stresses. “The Iranians are looking to harm Israelis and Israeli infrastructure. The proximity to Iran brings the assessment that there is a likelihood that this is an Iranian initiative. We are committed to continuing to check.”

The area of the blast, off Iran’s coast at the entrance to the Persian Gulf, saw a series of explosions in 2019 that the US Navy blamed on Iran, against the backdrop of steeply rising threats between former US president Donald Trump and Iranian leaders. Tehran had denied the accusations, which came after Trump abandoned Tehran’s 2015 nuclear deal with world powers and reimposed harsh sanctions on the country.