News ID: 268962
Published: 1226 GMT May 12, 2020

Funeral held for 19 victims of Iran naval incident

Funeral held for 19 victims of Iran naval incident

A funeral procession was held on Tuesday for 19 Iranian crewmen who died in a maritime incident involving the navy’s Konarak support vessel in the country’s southern waters in the Sea of Oman.

The ceremony took place in the southwestern port city of Chabahar, with military top brass and state officials in attendance, while observing social distancing rules in place to curb the coronavirus outbreak.

The accident, which also left 15 others injured, occurred on Sunday when a number of vessels were conducting exercises near the waters lying close to Jask and Chabahar ports, the navy said in a statement on Monday.

The damaged boat had been towed ashore for “technical investigations,” it said, calling on people to “avoid speculation” until investigations are completed.

A photograph released by Iran’s Army showed burn marks and some damage to the vessel.

Weighing 447 tons and 47 meters (154 feet) long, the Hendijan-class vessel was equipped with four cruise missiles. It was overhauled in 2018 and was able to launch sea and anti-ship missiles. The Dutch-made, 47-meter (155-foot) vessel was in service since 1988 and had a capacity of 40 tons.

The boat usually carried a crew of 20 sailors. It was not immediately clear how many crew members had been on board the warship at the time of the accident.

President Hassan Rouhani and other officials including the Armed Forces chief of staff, the army chief, the commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, and the foreign minister offered their condolences to the sailors’ families in separate messages.

Iran regularly holds exercises in the Sea of Oman, which is close to the Strait of Hormuz, the narrow mouth of the Persian Gulf through which 20 percent of the world's oil trade passes.

Press TV, AFP, and AP contributed to this story



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