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Hezbollah missile did not hit Turkish ship docked at Haifa


This screen capture of a picture shared by X user Iran Spectator shows the Turkish-owned cargo ship Yaf Horizon, which caught fire while docked at the Port of Haifa, in Israel, on June 10, 2024.
This screen capture of a picture shared by X user Iran Spectator shows the Turkish-owned cargo ship Yaf Horizon, which caught fire while docked at the Port of Haifa, in Israel, on June 10, 2024.
Iran Spectator

Iran Spectator

Blue-checked X account

“Hezbollah has just hit Israeli city Haifa with Missiles … For the first time ever, Hezbollah has unleashed chaos by striking Haifa's port — the beating heart of Israel's economy Israel is starting to fall …”

False

Tensions between Israel and Hezbollah, an Iran-backed Lebanese militia and political movement, continue to ratchet up amid the ongoing war in Gaza.

On June 12, an Israeli strike on a Hezbollah command and control center in southern Lebanon killed a senior Hezbollah field commander and three other Hezbollah fighters.

Hezbollah responded by launching its largest barrage of missiles at Israel since entering the war initiated by the Palestinian militant group Hamas in October 2023.

Smoke rises amid ongoing cross-border hostilities between Hezbollah and Israeli forces, in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, on June 13, 2024.
Smoke rises amid ongoing cross-border hostilities between Hezbollah and Israeli forces, in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, on June 13, 2024.

Pro-Hamas, anti-Israel forces have sought to disrupt maritime shipping in the region and target Israeli ports.

On June 10, Israel’s defense forces reportedly intercepted missiles fired from Lebanon targeting Haifa, a principal port city in Israel’s north, and another port city, Acre.

Israeli media posted videos of successful air defense interceptions in the region.

Yet on X, blue-checked users sympathetic to Hezbollah falsely claimed that the Lebanese militant group had successfully attacked the Port of Haifa.

Iran Spectator, an anonymous user with 38,000 followers, posts about Iranian news and politics. On June 10, the account posted an image of a ship with black smoke rising above it.

Iran Spectator commented on the image:

“Hezbollah has just hit Israeli city Haifa with Missiles … For the first time ever, Hezbollah has unleashed chaos by striking Haifa's port — the beating heart of Israel's economy. Israel is starting to fall …”

This screen capture of a post by X user Iran Spectator shows the false claim that the Turkish-owned cargo ship Yaf Horizon was attacked by Hezbollah while stopped at the Port of Haifa in Israel on June 10, 2024.
This screen capture of a post by X user Iran Spectator shows the false claim that the Turkish-owned cargo ship Yaf Horizon was attacked by Hezbollah while stopped at the Port of Haifa in Israel on June 10, 2024.

That is false.

A fire did occur on a ship docked at the Port of Haifa on June 10, but there is no evidence the ship came under attack from Hezbollah.

The vessel pictured in the social media posts is the Turkish-owned cargo ship Yaf Horizon. The ship had sailed from Novorossiysk, Russia, in the Black Sea, and stopped at the Port of Haifa.

Maritime news websites reported that a fire started in the ship’s engine room but was contained, and officials say there is no evidence the vessel was hit by a drone or gunfire.

The reports said the ship has a history of inspection violations, including issues with engine room cleanliness, fire damper operations and nonworking fire alarms.

Iran Spectator’s false post had received more than 350,000 views and some 10,000 reactions at the time of this writing.

Other blue-checked X users, many of whom identify themselves as news accounts, reposted images and videos of the same smoking ship and likewise claimed that Hezbollah had successfully struck the Port of Haifa.

This is not the first time members or supporters of the “Axis of Resistance,” an informal Iranian-led coalition that includes Hamas, Hezbollah, Houthi militants in Yemen and other armed Shiite groups throughout the Middle East and North Africa, claimed successful attacks on the port.

On June 6, the Islamic Resistance in Iraq and Houthi militants in Yemen claimed to have jointly carried out “accurate” drone strikes against ships at the Port of Haifa.

Israel’s military called those claims untrue.

The Houthis have managed to halt port operations at Eilat, a southern Israel town on the Red Sea. Israel has thusly rerouted the shipping of goods to its Mediterranean ports, further underscoring the threats a broader conflict with Hezbollah poses to Israel.

Various analysts have identified X as a primary source of mis- and disinformation about the conflict.

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