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Top US diplomat, Israeli counterpart discuss ‘next steps’ after ship attack

Published: Updated:

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken spoke to his Israeli counterpart on Saturday night to discuss the recent drone attack on the Israeli-managed ship.

“Secretary Blinken and FM Lapid discussed the attack on the Mercer Street, a commercial ship which was peacefully transiting through the north Arabian Sea,” State Department Spokesman Ned Price said in a statement.

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“They agreed to work with the United Kingdom, Romania, and other international partners to investigate the facts, provide support, and consider the appropriate next steps,” Price added.

On Friday, Lapid accused Iran of being behind the attack, which the US said was carried out using a drone strike.

But the Pentagon refused to cast blame as it awaits further investigations.

Reuters quoted US and European sources familiar with intelligence reporting as saying that Tehran was the leading suspect in the attack on the petroleum products tanker.

An Israeli-managed petroleum products tanker off the coast of Oman was attacked early Friday. Two crew members on board were killed in the attack.

Members from the US Navy’s 5th Fleet responded to a distress call from the ship, a Pentagon official told Al Arabiya.

The aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan other US ships accompanied the attacked ship.

Read more: Two crew members killed in attack on Israeli ship off Oman coast