Iran reports: Explosion at Iran oil tanker off Saudi Arabia

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The vessel, from Iran's national oil company (NOIC), was 60 miles (97km) from the Saudi port city of Jeddah when the incident took place, reports say.

The crew of the damaged Iranian oil tanker are safe, the situation aboard the vessel in the aftermath of the explosion is under control, according to media reports.

Iran on Friday released the British-flagged oil tanker it had seized in July 2019, while the country's president, returning from an annual United Nations meeting, said he had been told the United States had offered to lift sanctions if Tehran returned to the negotiating table over its nuclear program.

Yemen's Houthi rebels, with whom Saudi Arabia has always been at war, claimed credit for that assault, though analysts say the missiles used in the attack would not have the range to reach the sites from Yemen.

The U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet, which oversees the region, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

More news: Wall Street opens flat with focus on U.S.-China trade talks

Two storerooms aboard the oil tanker, identified as Sabity by state-run IRNA news agency, were damaged, causing an oil leak into the Red Sea, the state TV added.

IRIB News has reported that the oil tanker was hit by an explosion.

Tension between Iran and Gulf states allied with the USA has been high for several months after the Donald Trump administration announced re-imposition of tough sanctions on Tehran.

The US, which announced that it would be deploying a carrier strike group to the Middle East about two weeks before the May attacks, blamed Iran for the sabotage.

All reports said the reported explosion happened off the coast of Jiddah on the Red Sea.

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