Nineteen sailors on board an Iranian navy ship have been killed in a friendly fire incident, the country's army has said.
In a statement, it said a missile hit the vessel which was taking part in an exercise in the Gulf of Oman on Sunday. 15 people have also been wounded.
Iranian state media reported that Hendijan-class support ship Konarak was hit after getting too close to a target during live-firing drills near the Strait of Hormuz.
Reports suggested the vessel had been placing targets when it was accidentally hit.
The incident happened close to the port of Jask, 790 miles south-east of Tehran, state TV said.
Retired Royal Navy commander, Commander (Ret'd) Tom Sharpe told Forces News the incident suggests Iran's navy is trialling new weapon systems.
“It tells us that they are trialling, testing new weapons systems, and sometimes old weapons systems in new platforms, and ensuring that they’re as safe as possible to operate," he said.
“Now clearly in this instance that trial has gone wrong, with tragic consequences.”
Cover image: Gulf of Oman (Picture: Google Earth).