The Week in Review: June.14th – June.21st

JUNE 21 – Debate raged on around the provenance of tanker attacks in the Gulf of Oman this week. The U.S. military had previously released video footage which it said showed Iranian Revolutionary Guards in an Iranian patrol boat removing an unexploded mine from one of the ships after the attacks. 

On Monday, the U.S. military released further photographs which it said supported the claims. The U.S. Navy said on Wednesday that it had recovered limpet mine fragments from one of the vessels, which bore a “striking resemblance” to mines seen during Iranian military parades. Iran continues to deny any involvement in the attacks. 

Meanwhile the Iranian government said it shot down a U.S. drone in Iranian airspace on Thursday. The U.S. claimed ownership of the drone but denied its presence inside Iran, saying that the drone was flying over international airspace above the Strait of Hormuz. The incident sent oil prices soaring, with an increase of more than 3% to above $63 a barrel, fueling concerns that a war with Iran could be imminent. 

The U.S. Special Representative to Iran, Brian Hook, traveled to the Middle East on Wednesday to meet with officials in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Kuwait and Bahrain. The talks focused on Iran and its activities in the region and U.S. intelligence on Iran. Hook will travel to Europe for consultations with the E3 (UK, Germany and France) on June 27. 

The meetings come after Tehran said it would exceed its uranium stockpile limit in the next 10 days, breaching terms outlined in the nuclear deal. Iran’s atomic agency also said Tehran could start enriching uranium to weapons-grade, from 7 July.


  • Boris Johnson is tipped to be the U.K.’s next prime minister. But what will that mean for Iran? 
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  • Experts said this week that missile attacks on the offices of foreign oil companies in Mosul and Basra, Iraq, were carried out by Iran. The attacks left three people wounded.
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  • A surge in knife fights between street vendors in Iran are compromising public safety around one of the most prestigious performing arts venues, the Iranian Students News Agency (ISNA) reported. At least one altercation has led to a man being shot outside the City Theatre.
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  • The Iranian Parliament has made acid attacks a crime punishable by death if deemed “threatening to the social fabric and the safety and security of the community.” However a proposal to restrict the sale of acid was not accepted.
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