19 sailors killed during Iranian naval exercise
Tehran, May 11 (efe-epa).- At least 19 sailors have died and 15 others were wounded during an Iranian naval exercise, it was reported on Monday.
The incident between two vessels, the frigate Jamaran and the light support ship Konarak, took place in the Gulf of Oman on Sunday, according to a statement released the following day by the Iranian military.
It occurred when the ships were carrying out naval manoeuvres in the area and is “under investigation”, the statement added.
Iranian state television media said on its website: “Konarak vessel was struck with a missile yesterday (Sunday) afternoon during a military exercise in the waters of Bandar-e Jask.”
“The vessel was hit after moving a practice target to its destination and not creating enough distance between itself and the target,” it added.
The Konarak has been docked to proceed with the investigation, according to military authorities.
The Iranian army urged against speculation after several local media outlets reported that the Konarak was mistakenly attacked with a missile by the Jamaran during naval exercises.
Rescue teams rushed to the scene, between the strategic ports of Jask and Chabahar, and transferred the victims to medical centres.
Mehran Amini Fard, director of the University of Medical Sciences of the city of Iranshahr, said that a dozen ambulances were sent and that the injured were admitted to the Imam Ali hospital, and some were in intensive care.
Iranian authorities said the wounded were in a “good condition”.