USA releases video it claims proves Iran's role in tanker attacks

The A Michel tanker was among those damaged in the 12 May Fujairah attacks

The A Michel tanker was among those damaged in the 12 May Fujairah attacks

"We are confident that Iran bears responsibility for that attack".

"Britain should act to ease tensions in the Gulf, not fuel a military escalation that began with U.S. withdrawal from the Iran nuclear agreement", he said, referring to Washington's withdrawal from a 2015 pact to curb Tehran's nuclear plans. The owner of the tanker that carried methanol later said it was hit by two "flying objects". An individual stands up on the bow of the boat and can be seen removing an object from the tanker's hull. One of the ships is owned by a Japanese company, according to USA officials.

"There are elements within the Iranian regime that do not want the US and Iran to ever come to a bargaining table", Col. Stephen Ganyard, USMC (Ret.) and former State Department official, says.

But Iranian president Hassan Rouhani accused the USA of "carrying out an aggressive policy and posing a serious threat to regional stability". "The video now nails it".

"To put a bomb on the side is not something we are thinking", he said.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the attack on two oil tankers was one in a list of Iranian and Iranian-backed attacks over the last month, declaring it was a "clear threat to peace, security, and freedom of navigation".

Iran has repeatedly said it will not re-enter talks with the United States unless it reverses Trump's decision to withdraw from the nuclear deal.

We call on Iran urgently to cease all forms of destabilising activity.

The ships' operators offered no immediate explanation on who or what caused the damage against the Norwegian-owned MT Front Altair and the Japanese-owned Kokuka Courageous. The Mason later fired Tomahawk cruise missiles at radar installations believed to have been used in the attempted attack on the warship, Pentagon officials said at the time.

His comments were denounced as "pathetic" by Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt. who accused him of consistently failing to stand up for the interests of Britain and its allies.

Last month, the USA sharply tightened economic sanctions that are now damaging the economy of Iran.

"Iran did do it", Trump told Fox. "They're in deep, deep trouble". Roughly 30% of the world's sea-borne crude oil passes through the strategic choke point, making it a flashpoint for political and economic friction.

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UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told the UN Security Council on Thursday the world could not afford "a major confrontation in the Gulf region".

But Iran hit back, accusing the United States of "unfounded and reckless" claims and of "warmongering".

He added that Iran "expresses concern" over the "suspicious incidents".

It was also based on recent incidents in the region, which the United States also blamed on Iran, including the use of limpet mines in the Fujairah attack, he said.

However, the latest attack highlighted the danger of shipping routes near the strait.

He requested "all related countries" to avoid escalating tension in the region and said Japan will help to de-escalate the tension. "We have that. It was them that did it".

The two oil tankers were attacked at dawn on Thursday about 40 kilometres (25 miles) off the southern coast of Iran. Iran has denied involvement.

For its part, Iran rejected the accusations as the United Nations, Russia and Qatar called for an worldwide investigation into the reported attacks.

On Friday, a United Kingdom intelligence source told CNN that Britain had "no doubts" over the validity of the video released by the US Central Command.

He said the U.S. had made its assessment based on intelligence about the type of weapons used.

Singapore said it was deeply concerned about the rising tensions, and urged all parties to exercise restraint.

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