EU calls for ‘maximum restraint’ after Gulf of Oman incident

The Strait of Hormuz links Middle East crude producers to key markets in Asia Pacific, Europe, North America and beyond. (AFP)

The European Union on Thursday called for “maximum restraint” to avoid escalation after two oil tankers were reportedly attacked in the Gulf of Oman, forcing their crews to evacuate the vessels.

Maja Kocijancic, spokeswoman for EU diplomatic chief Federica Mogherini said “the region does not need further elements of destabilization and tensions and therefore her (Mogherini’s) call and our call continues to be for maximum restraint and to avoid any provocations.”

INTERTANKO: Ships in Gulf were attacked, other vessels at risk

The tanker association INTERTANKO said on Thursday that two vessels had been attacked in the Middle East and there were growing worries for the safety of ships and their crews sailing through the Strait of Hormuz.

The two tankers were hit in the Gulf of Oman, sending oil prices as much as 4 percent higher, a month after four other tankers were damaged by limpet mines in the same region.

“Following two attacks on member vessels this morning, I am extremely worried about the safety of our crews going through the Strait of Hormuz,” Paolo d’Amico, chairman of INTERTANKO, said in a statement.

“We need to remember that some 30 percent of the world’s (seaborne) crude oil passes through the Straits. If the waters are becoming unsafe, the supply to the entire Western world could be at risk.”

INTERTANKO represents the greater part of the world’s independent tanker fleet.

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Last Update: 14:03 KSA 17:03 - GMT 14:03
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