Screenshot of a US Navy video in which US Central Command claims Iranian forces are captured removing a limpet mine from Kokuka Courageous on June 13, 2019.
U.S. Central Command has released a video and photographs that officials say prove the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy attacked two merchant tankers in the Gulf of Oman on Thursday.
As a result, the U.S. is sending a second warship to the vicinity of the two merchant vessels that were attacked in the Gulf of Oman on Thursday, U.S. Central Command said.
Guided-missile destroyer USS Mason (DDG-87) is joining U.S. forces assisting a merchant tanker that has been abandoned by its crew after suffering damage from what U.S. officials are calling a deliberate attack.
Earlier Thursday, the crew of destroyer USS Bainbridge (DDG-96) rescued the crew of a tanker that was allegedly attacked in the Gulf of Oman, officials told USNI News on Thursday afternoon.
“Twenty-one mariners from the M/V Kokuka Courageous, who abandoned ship, were rescued and are currently aboard USS Bainbridge,” according to U.S. Central Command spokesman Army Lt. Col. Earl Brown.
“Bainbridge remains in close contact with the M/V Kokuka Courageous and is the on-scene U.S. command authority. No interference with USS Bainbridge, or its mission, will be tolerated.”
Kokuka Courageous, had initially reported damage to its starboard hull in an unspecified security incident. Iranian state television issued video of Front Altair burning from a hull breach on the starboard side of the ship.