TEHRAN: One of Iran’s largest naval ships sank on Wednesday after catching fire while on a “training mission” off a strategic port near the head of the Gulf, the navy said.
The British-built fleet replenishment vessel Kharg, which measured more than 200 metres (more than 650 feet) long, caught fire on Tuesday off the port of Jask on the Gulf of Oman, the navy said.
Footage aired by state television showed a massive column of smoke rising from what it said was the burning vessel. The fire broke out in “one of the systems” of the ship, a navy statement said without elaborating. Firefighting efforts continued “for 20 hours” before the ship went down.
“Considering the spread of the fire, the mission to save the Kharg failed and it sank in waters off Jask,” the navy said.
The ship caught fire at 11 am on Tuesday as it was in “domestic waters” during “a training mission”, Iran’s Tasnim news agency quoted the navy’s head of public relations Behzad Jahanian as saying.
Published in Dawn, June 3rd, 2021