Factbox: Latest on suspected attacks on tankers in Gulf of Oman

(Reuters) – Here is the latest from Reuters on suspected attacks on two tankers on Thursday south of the Strait of Hormuz, through which almost a fifth of the world’s oil is shipped:

* Panama-listed tanker Kokuka Courageous was damaged in a “suspected attack” that breached the hull above the water line, Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement said

* The ship was attacked twice in three hours before all the crew were evacuated, the president of Japanese owner Kokuka Sangyo told reporters

* There had been an engine room fire on the tanker, which was carrying a cargo of methanol from Saudi Arabia to Singapore

* A second ship, the Marshall Islands-flagged Front Altair, was “suspected of being hit by a torpedo” at around 0400 GMT, said Taiwanese refiner CPC Corp, which had chartered the vessel

* The Aframax-class tanker loaded with 75,000 tonnes of naphtha was on fire, said Norwegian owner Frontline

* Frontline said the Front Altair was afloat, denying a report by Iran’s IRNA news agency that it had sunk

* It was traveling from Ruwais, United Arab Emirates, to Taiwan, according to trade sources and Refinitiv Eikon data

* All 44 sailors from the two ships have been rescued by Iranian search and rescue teams, Tehran’s Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) reported, citing an unnamed informed source

* The Bahrain-based U.S. Navy Fifth Fleet said it was assisting after receiving distress calls

* Oil prices surged by 4% on the news

Reporting by Koustav Samanta and Jessica Jaganathan in Singapore, Liang-Sa Loh and Yimou Lee in Taipei, Terje Solsvik in Oslo and Jonathan Saul in London; editing by Jason Neely

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