Iranian coastguard detains vessel in Gulf of Oman

Iranian coastguard said on Saturday that it detained a foreign vessel in the Gulf of Oman for smuggling oil.

No further details of the vessel or origin have emerged.

Tensions in the Gulf have risen since attacks on oil tankers this summer, including off the UAE coast, and a major assaulton energy facilities in Saudi Arabia.

Washington has blamed Iran, which has denied being behind the attacks on global energy infrastructure.

On February 13, aUS navy ship seized 150 Iranian-manufactured anti-tank guided missilesafter boarding a vessel while conducting maritime security operations in the Arabian Sea on Sunday.

Last Thursday, it was announced thata mixed naval exercisewill start next week, where the Royal Saudi Naval Forces will host the US Navy at the King Abdulaziz Naval Base.

The ‘Marine Defender’ exercise is an extension of a series of previous joint exercises between the two countries, according to a report by Saudi Press Agency (SPA).

“The exercise aims to raise combat readiness to maintain freedom of maritime navigation. The exercise enhances maritime security in the region and unifies the concepts of naval combat work,” according to the report.

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