19 Iranian sailors were recently killed in the Gulf of Oman. This was the result of a “friendly” missile striking one of their own ships. The mishap occurred on Sunday, during a training event. Iranian sources insist this was an accidental friendly-fire incident. In addition to those killed, 12 sailors needed hospitalization.
An Iranian support class vessel named Konarak was dropping targets for a destroyer to engage. That’s when things went horribly wrong. Iranian state media posted a statement about the incident on their website, “The vessel was hit after moving a practice target to its destination and not creating enough distance between itself and the target.”
The Iranian navy has not made a comment on what they were using for targets. Additionally, there has been no published documents as to the prodigal of these types of live fire maneuvers.
According to Al Jazeera network, “an Iranian destroyer accidentally fired a C-802 Noor missile.” This missile then struck the support class vessel that was “too close to the target.” The C-802 missiles originated in China, but the US pressured China to discontinue sales to Iran. Following this, Iran began to reverse engineer the missile and produce their own. Iran claims they upgraded the missile, and dramatically increased it’s range.
A pattern of recklessness
You may remember when we reported on the Ukrainian jet plane that was ‘unintentionally’ shot down. This marking the second major mishap for the Iranian military this year. At least, that we know of.
These events are particularly concerning considering the tension between Iran and the US. Recently, Iranian sailors and their small crafts have been harassing US warships and US Coast Guard vessels. As a result, President Trump gave explicit orders regarding the matter. The President said “I have instructed the United States Navy to shoot down and destroy any and all Iranian gunboats if they harass our ships at sea.”
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