A Middle Eastern general cargo ship has reported an “attack” in the Strait of Hormuz.

The incident took place just after midnight on Wednesday morning in Oman territorial waters, according to security company Ambrey.

Ambrey confirmed that the Panama-flag, United Arab Emirates-controlled vessel reported the attack over VHF Channel 16.

The company classed the incident as a “suspicious approach”.

The ship was observed leaving the eastbound traffic separation scheme without a significant change in speed.

It then proceeded to head east towards Iran.

After entering Iranian waters, the vessel went adrift.

Eight hours later, the ship resumed sailing east closer to Iran and then turned south.

Ambrey additionally observed a vessel-borne Sikorsky MH-60S Knighthawk helicopter of the US Navy loitering in the vicinity of the drifting unit.

Heading to Cameroon?

The ship left Sharjah in the UAE on 12 September, with a reported destination of “Cammaroon” (sic).

The company is not naming the vessel, but the details tally with the 6,800-dwt Royal Blue (the former Cosocean, built 2000).

AIS data showed the Royal Blue underway in the Gulf of Oman on Wednesday afternoon.

The Royal Blue is listed as owned by Oasis International of the UAE, which has been contacted for comment.

The Persian Gulf has been quiet in terms of similar incidents since July, when Iran tried to detain two tankers, and seized a chemical carrier on suspicion of smuggling oil.

The Tanzania-flagged tanker of 1,131 dwt was approached by Iranian forces.

The description fitted the profile of the 1,100-dwt Nada2 (built 1990).

This came a day after the US accused Iranian forces of firing on Chevron’s 319,000-dwt VLCC Richmond Voyager (built 2018), which suffered minor damage.