A blast hit a Japanese oil tanker in early Wednesday in the Strait of Hormuz near Iran and Oman, and the crew attributed the explosion to an attack, the Japanese transport ministry said. One crew member was wounded and the ship, belonging to Mitsui OSK Lines, was partly damaged but continued sailing after the incident, the Japanese ministry was cited as saying by AFP.
"Since one of the crew saw a flash on the horizon immediately before the blast, the company suspects it was highly likely an attack," the transport ministry said.
The vessel, staffed by 16 crew from the Philippines and 15 Indians, was carrying 270,000 tones of crude oil, but did not suffer a spill.
The tanker was heading from the United Arab Emirates to the Japanese port of Chiba, the ministry declared.