Iran's largest navy ship sinks in Gulf of Oman

Iran's largest navy ship sinks in Gulf of Oman

Iran's largest navy ship sinks in Gulf of Oman

Fars published video of thick, black smoke rising from the ship early on Wednesday morning.

In a similar vein, Iran's semi-official Fars news agency reported that "all efforts to save the vessel were unsuccessful and it sank", according to Reuters.

One of Iran's largest navy ships has sunk after catching fire near the Strait of Hormuz under unclear circumstances.

Kharg, the largest vessel in Iran's navy, sank early Wednesday in the Gulf of Oman near the port of Jask, Hormozgan province, after being ablaze for almost 24 hours, Iranian news agencies have reported.

The blaze on board the navy ship began around 2.25am and firefighters were unable to save the vessel.

Satellite photos from Planet Labs Inc. analyzed by The Associated Press showed the Kharg off to the west of Jask on Tuesday.

The Kharg was commissioned by the Shah of Iran and built in the United Kingdom in the 1970s. It also can lift heavy cargo and serve as a launch point for helicopters.

"Considering the spread of the fire, the mission to save the Kharg failed and it sank in waters off Jask", the navy said.

The country's highest tonnage Navy vessel known as the Kharg caught fire in the Gulf of Oman near the Port of Jask, where it was on a training mission.

The Kharg was one of Iran's few ships capable of replenishing other ships while at sea.

Iranian officials have given no reason for why the fire started, but the incident is reportedly under investigation.

Iran has refused to recognize Israel since the Islamic revolution in 1979 that toppled the US-backed Shah.

The incidents came amid heightened tensions between the United States and Iran after then-president Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew America from Tehran's nuclear deal with world powers.

In April, Tehran said its freighter Saviz was hit by an "explosion" in the Red Sea, after media reports said Israel had struck the ship.

"What was shown today in these exercises, at the level of aerospace and naval forces, was all offensive", Iran's Revolutionary Guards commander Major General Hossein Salami told state television in the days before the fake wooden carrier sank. It escalated a yearslong shadow war in Mideast waters between the two countries.

Tehran offered no cause for the fire, however the ship's loss marks the latest in a string of naval disasters for Iran going back to 2018 when an Iranian navy destroyer sank in the Caspian Sea.

Gambrell reported from Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

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