Home Middle East Iran Missile ‘Accidentally’ Strikes Own Warship, 19 Sailors Killed

Iran Missile ‘Accidentally’ Strikes Own Warship, 19 Sailors Killed

The missile launch, part of ongoing training, hit a support vessel in the Gulf of Oman killing at least 19 sailors and wounding 15.

Iran’s army announced on May 11 that at least 19 sailors were killed and 15 wounded after an Iranian missile fired during a training exercise in the Gulf of Oman struck a support ship near its intended target on May 10. The “friendly fire” incident occurred near the port of Jask, about 1270 kilometres southeast of Tehran, on the Gulf of Oman. It is a sensitive waterway responsible for passing at least a fifth of the world’s oil. The area is regularly used by Iran for training and exercises.

“On Sunday afternoon, during an exercise by a number of the navy’s vessels in Jask and Chabahar waters, the Konarak light support vessel had an accident,” Iran’s army said in a statement. “The number of this accident’s martyrs is 19 and 15 have also been injured,” it further added and said that the vessel had been towed ashore. 

Iran’s state television announced that the incident was an accident. It said that the Konarak, a Hendijan-class support ship, which was hit by the missile, had been putting targets in the water as part of the target practising exercise for Iran’s warships and ventured too close to one of the targets. Iran’s semi-official news agency Tasnim reported, “Iran’s Moudge-class frigate Jamaran accidentally hit the Konarak ship with a missile during the exercise.”