Sources close to Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) say a Singapore ship that was thought to be abducted off the coast of the United Arab Emirates earlier this month has safely docked at a southern Iranian port.
A report by Iran’s semi-official Nournews, a website close to the SNSC, said on Thursday said that Golden Brilliant had docked at the Persian Gulf port of Shahid Rajaee earlier in the day.
It said the safe landing exposed fake reports by international news agencies three weeks ago suggesting that the ship had been hijacked by forces close to Iran.
Nournews said it had interviewed the captain of the Singapore ship, saying he had dismissed rumors about abduction while insisting that no incident had happened to the ship and its crews earlier this month.
The Reuters news agency quoted maritime sources as saying in an August 3 report that Iran-backed forces had seized two ships, including Golden Brilliant, off the UAE coast. Reuters said in another report on August 4 that hijacking was over, citing statements by Omani officials and sources in the United Kingdom.
The reports came amid high tensions in the Persian Gulf after the United States, Israel and Britain alleged that two sailors had been killed in an attack on an Israeli-operated ship off the coast of Oman that they blamed on Iran.
Iranian authorities have denied any involvement in all the incidents in the Persian Gulf in July and August.
The Thursday report by Nournews directly accused Reuters of fabricating stories to serve Israeli interest, saying the news agency has yet to come up with names of sailors who were allegedly killed in the late July attack on the Israeli-managed ship.
It asked how Reuters would seek to repair its already stained reputation now that Golden Brilliant has safely docked in southern Iran.