Israel-affiliated merchant vessel hit by unmanned aerial vehicle off India: UK firm

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An Israel-affiliated merchant vessel in the Arabian Sea off India’s west coast was struck by an unmanned aerial vehicle, causing a fire, British maritime security firm Ambrey said on Saturday.

The fire on the Liberian-flagged chemical products tanker was extinguished without crew casualties in the incident 200 kilometers (120 miles) southwest of Veraval, India, it said.

“Some structural damage was also reported and some water was taken onboard. The vessel was Israel-affiliated. She had last called Saudi Arabia and was destined for India at the time,” the firm said on its website.

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An Indian Navy official told Reuters that it responded to a request for assistance on Saturday morning.

“The safety of crew and ship has been ascertained. The Navy has also dispatched a warship to arrive in the area and provide assistance as required,” the official said, declining to be named as he was not authorized to discuss the incident.

It follows drone and missile attacks in the Red Sea by Iran-backed Houthis, who say they are supporting Palestinians under siege by Israel in the Gaza Strip, on commercial shipping, forcing shippers to change course and take longer routes around the southern tip of Africa.

Read more:

US says Iran ‘deeply involved’ in Houthi attacks on ships in Red Sea

Northern Gaza no longer has a functional hospital, WHO says

Shipping firms impose surcharges as Red Sea attacks hit global trade

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