19 Iranians killed, 15 injured after Navy vessel hit by friendly fire
A Nour missile is test fired off Iran's first domestically made destroyer, Jamaran, on the southern shores of Iran in the Persian Gulf March 9, 2010
(photo credit: REUTERS/EBRAHIM NOROOZI/IIPA)
The Iranian military stressed that the incident was being investigated by "expert teams" and that "any speculation" about the incident should be avoided.
Nineteen Iranians were killed and 15 others were injured after an Iranian naval vessel was reportedly hit by friendly fire during a naval exercise on Sunday.The IRGC-affiliated Tasnim News Agency reported that the “accident” involving the Konarak support vessel took place in the waters off Jask Port in the Gulf of Oman.
Two of the wounded are in intensive care units and the others are in stable condition, according to Fars News Agency.The military stressed that the incident was being investigated by “expert teams” and that “any speculation” about the incident should be avoided. Initial reports from Iran stated that the Konarak was “sunk” by a missile fired by Iran's Jamaran frigate resulting in a number of seamen being killed or missing, according to Radio Farda. Some reports indicated dozens of injuries and deaths, with about 40 military personnel estimated to have been on board at the time.Some reports indicated that the Konarak had brought a target to the area for the test launch of a cruise missile, but was not completely out of the way before the missile was fired.The Konarak was considered a light support vessel and can carry dozens of crew, but it is unclear how many personnel were on board. The Jamaran, Iran’s first domestically built destroyer, carries about 120 personnel and is armed with surface-to-air missiles, torpedoes and modern naval cannons, according to Iran’s Press TV. It has been armed with the Noor surface-to-surface cruise missile as well.The navy regularly conducts military exercises in the Gulf of Oman.In April, US President Donald Trump said he had instructed the US Navy to fire on any Iranian ships that harass it at sea, a week after 11 vessels from the Revolutionary Guards’ Navy came dangerously close to American ships in the Persian Gulf.Soon after, Guards leader Hossein Salami told state TV that he had “ordered our naval forces to destroy any American terrorist force in the Persian Gulf that threatens security of Iran’s military or non-military ships.”Reuters contributed to this report.