Pentagon Claims More Photo Evidence Iran Is Behind Tanker Attacks

The Pentagon released new images late Monday night which officials said offered more evidence operatives from Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) were responsible for last week's attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman.
U.S. Department of Defense

The Pentagon released new images late Monday night which officials said offered more evidence operatives from Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) were responsible for last week’s attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman.

The U.S. military said the photos, taken from a Navy helicopter, showed Iranian forces removing an unexploded mine from the hull of the Japanese-owned Kokuka Courageous oil tanker.

This image released by the U.S. Department of Defense on Monday, June 17, 2019, and taken from a U.S. Navy helicopter, shows what the Navy says are members of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy removing an unexploded limpet mine from the M/T Kokuka Courageous. (U.S. Department of Defense via AP)

This image released by the U.S. Department of Defense on Monday, June 17, 2019, and taken from a U.S. Navy helicopter, shows what the Navy says are members of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy removing an unexploded limpet mine from the M/T Kokuka Courageous. (U.S. Department of Defense via AP)

Other photos showed a large hole on the side of the Courageous, above the waterline, that officials said appeared to have been caused by another mine.

U.S. Department of Defense has released further images of hull damage to an oil tanker damaged last week in the Gulf of Oman (AFP).

U.S. Department of Defense has released further images of hull damage to an oil tanker damaged last week in the Gulf of Oman (AFP).

The release of the photos came as the U.S. Government works this week to convince members of Congress and allies that the accusations against Tehran are true. Iran has accused America of promoting an “Iranophobic” campaign.

Tehran, however, has repeatedly threatened to close the vital Strait of Hormuz, through which 20 per cent of the world’s oil flows.

This image released by the U.S. Department of Defense on Monday, June 17, 2019, and taken from a U.S. Navy helicopter, shows what the Navy says is the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy after removing an unexploded limpet mine from the M/T Kokuka Courageous. (U.S. Department of Defense via AP)

This image released by the U.S. Department of Defense on Monday, June 17, 2019, and taken from a U.S. Navy helicopter, shows what the Navy says is the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy after removing an unexploded limpet mine from the M/T Kokuka Courageous. (U.S. Department of Defense via AP)

“Iran is responsible for the attack, based on video evidence and the resources and proficiency needed to quickly remove the unexploded limpet mine,” the U.S. military’s Central Command said in a statement by way of background to the image selection.

The U.S. military has also accused the IRGC of trying but failing to shoot down a U.S. drone, to disrupt surveillance of the tankers during the attacks.

This image released by the U.S. Department of Defense on Monday, June 17, 2019, according to the Navy, shows the aluminum and green composite material left behind following removal of an unexploded limpet mine used in an attack on the starboard side of motor vessel M/T Kokuka Courageous, while operating in the Gulf of Oman. (U.S. Department of Defense via AP)

This image released by the U.S. Department of Defense on Monday, June 17, 2019, according to the Navy, shows the aluminum and green composite material left behind following removal of an unexploded limpet mine used in an attack on the starboard side of motor vessel M/T Kokuka Courageous, while operating in the Gulf of Oman. (U.S. Department of Defense via AP)

The Pentagon announced Monday that Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan has authorized sending another 1,000 troops to the Middle East, following the attacks.

On Tuesday, the Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, is due to visit the Florida headquarters of U.S. Central Command (in charge of all operations in the Middle East) and U.S. special forces.

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