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Iranian support warship Kharg in 2009. Photo: Majid Jamshidi-Hossein Zohrevand/AFP via Getty Images

Iran's largest navy ship, known as the Kharg, caught on fire on Wednesday and sunk in the Gulf of Oman, according to state media.

Details: The fire broke out at around 2:25 a.m. while the ship was near Iran's Port of Jask, a major shipping lane. No casualties were reported and the entire crew was able to escape the wreck and was taken to safety on the coast, per NPR.

  • Officials tried for 20 hours to put out the fire, but were unable to as the flames spread to different parts of the ship.
  • The Kharg was being deployed for training operations when the blaze erupted.

The big picture: While Iranian officials have not offered any cause that might have started the fire, this was the latest in a series of mysterious explosions that has been targeting ships in the Gulf of Oman since 2019, AP reports.

  • The U.S. accused Iran of being responsible for a series of attacks on oil tankers near the Strait of Hormuz in 2019, saying the regime was engaged in "an unacceptable campaign of escalating tensions."
  • Iran has denied targeting ships in the area, but U.S. Navy footage caught members of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps removed an unexploded limpet mine from a vessel in 2019.

Yes, but: Iran's ships have experienced incidents in the past that were unrelated to conflicts with foreign nations. In 2020, a training vessel was mistakenly hit by a missile near the Port of Jask, ending in 19 casualties, per AP.

Go deeper

U.S. Coast Guard receives over 2,000 water pollution reports after Ida

Photo: Satellite image ©2021 Maxar Technologies.

The U.S. Coast Guard confirmed Thursday it has assessed more than 800 of over 2,000 reports of pollution in the wake of Hurricane Ida. Nearly 350 of these have been reports of oil spills.

What's happening: The Coast Guard has established a pollution response team in Baton Rouge following the reports that have emerged since the Aug. 29 hurricane, which first made landfall with maximum sustained winds of 150 mph in Port Fourchon, Louisiana — a key oil industry hub and staging area.

Tina Reed, author of Vitals
1 hour ago - Health

Gottlieb: CDC hampered U.S. response to COVID

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

The CDC moved too slowly at several points in the coronavirus pandemic, ultimately hindering the U.S. response, former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb writes in a new book, Uncontrolled Spread.

The big picture: The book argues that American intelligence agencies should have a much bigger role in pandemic preparedness, even if that's sometimes at the expense of public health agencies like the CDC.

911's digital makeover

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

A next-generation 911 would allow the nation's 6,000 911 centers to accept texts, videos and photos.

The big picture: U.S. emergency communications have remained stubbornly analog, but Congress is about to take another run at dragging 911 into the digital age.

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