JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – Global crude oil prices rally after two tankers carrying oil were attacked while passing the Gulf of Oman. Brent crude oil rose 4 percent before settled about 2 percent higher to US$61.30 a barrel, while West Texas Intermediate for July delivery rose 2.2 percent to $52.28 a barrel after tapping an intraday high of $53.45 on Thursday (06/13).
One of the tankers was attacked by torpedo while another tanker caught fire, Reuters reported. Currently, United States (US) naval forces are assisting tankers in the Gulf of Oman after receiving two distress calls on Thursday.
At the same day, the British Maritime Trade Operation section of the British Navy said it was investigating this incident. As Daily Mirror reported, after being identified, two tankers namely the Front Altair and Kokuka Courageous.
Kokuka Courageous belongs to the Norwegian company, when attacked this tanker was carrying crude oil. The ship was about to sail from Saudi Arabia to Singapore.
Whereas the tanker which was reported was attacked by a torpedo named Front Altair and carried an estimated 75 tons of petroleum refinery containing liquid and flammable hydrocarbons.
The Gulf of Oman is not far from the Strait of Hormuz where a shooting incident which was considered a form of sabotage occurred before. On the Strait of Hormuz is the oil trade route. There are 20 percent of the oil trade going through this route.
In a previous incident four tankers that sailed past the Strait of Hormuz were claimed to be sabotaged near the port of Fujairah, United Arab Emirates, Sunday (05/12). In the attack, one United Arab Emirate-flagged and Norwegian-flagged ship was victimized. While the other two are tankers belonging to Saudi Arabia
This incident occurred in the middle of the visit of the Prime Minister (PM) of Japan, Shinzo Abe to Iran. The first visit after 41 years ago gave hope to mediate tensions between Washington and Tehran.
Japan is one of the few US allies who also has a strong relationship with Iran, making them a potential mediator to de-escalate tensions between the two arch-enemies. Shortly after the Abe’ plane landed, he went to meet Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and will meet Iran’ Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
Hours before he arrived in Tehran, Iranian-backed Houthi rebels launched a drone attack on Saudi’ Abha International Airport, injuring 26. This attack will bring to the forefront tensions between Iran, the US and Arab nations, which have threatened to boil over into a full-scale conflict in the Middle East in recent months.
Written by Willy Matrona, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org