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UN Security Council to discuss deadly tanker attack on Friday

August 5, 2021 at 6:21 pm

The Israeli-linked Japanese-owned tanker MT Mercer Street is seen off the port of the Gulf Emirate of Fujairah in the United Arab Emirates on 3 August 2021. [KARIM SAHIB/AFP via Getty Images]

Britain will discuss a deadly tanker attack off the coast of Oman during a closed-door United Nations Security Council meeting on Friday, diplomats said, but the 15-member body is not expected to take any action, reports Reuters.

Britain told the Security Council on Tuesday it was “highly likely” that Iran used one or more drones to carry out the tanker attack last week, which killed two crew members – a Briton and a Romanian.

“There’s a lot of conflicting information. A ‘highly likely’ analysis, which we totally reject. We need to establish facts … we don’t need to rush to any conclusions or actions without having proof of what has happened,” deputy Russian UN Ambassador Dmitry Polyanskiy told reporters on Wednesday.

Tehran has denied any involvement in Thursday’s attack on the Mercer Street – a Liberian-flagged, Japanese-owned petroleum product tanker managed by Israeli-owned Zodiac Maritime. Two crew members, a Briton and a Romanian, were killed.

Read: Iran made ‘big mistake’ by targeting oil tanker, says UK’s military chief

Two crew members of the oil tanker Mercer Street, owned by Israeli billionaire Eyal Ofer’s Zodiac Group, were killed in the attack in the Indian Ocean while en route from Tanzania to the United Arab Emirates, the company said on July 30.

One of the crew members was a British national named Adrian Underwood, who worked as a security guard. He was an army veteran, married, and the father of one child.

The attack ripped a hole through the top of the tanker’s bridge, which housed the captain and crew.

Read: Israel to give foreign envoys proof of Iran’s involvement on ship attack

The Mercer Street was escorted to a nearby port by the US aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan and the guided-missile destroyer USS Mitscher.

The United States and Britain said on Sunday they would work with their allies to respond to the attack.