Iran’s Friendly Fire Missile Strike Kills 19 Sailors, Wounds 15

Missile fired on support vessel during training

Reports of Iran accidentally hitting a support ship have turned out to be true, with Iran confirming that the incident happened near Jask, during a live-fire training exercise. The army has reported at least 19 sailors were killed, and 15 others wounded.

Iranian officials say that the Konarak, the struck support ship, was “too close” to a target for the exercise, and the Jamaran hit it with a cruise missile. This is a common site for Iranian naval exercises, but such accidents are very rare.

Iran’s Navy responded by praising personnel involved in the rescue of those injured in the accident, saying that they had shown “exemplary courage” in recovering survivors. The Konarak has been towed to the shore and transferred for examination.

Either way, the incident is potentially embarrassing for Iran’s security forces, and officials are likely to try to explain it away as a simple error.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of Antiwar.com.