Dubai’s police chief officer has called the GCC countries to draft a unified plan dealing with environmental disasters resulting from terrorist attacks, the UAE-based The Gulf News reported.
“We know the region is at threat and the incident of the Japanese oil tanker confirms this,“ said Lt. Gen. Dahi Khalfan Tamim, referring to the M Star, which was damaged in the Strait of Hormuz on July 28.
Tamim’s comments followed a Monday announcement by security officials at the Critical National Infrastructure Authority in the country’s capital that the UAE will start providing armed escorts to oil tankers in Abu Dhabi.
Investigators of the M Star incident found that the vessel carrying 270,000 tons of oil en route from al-Ruwais port to Tokyo was subject to of a terrorist attack and was hit by a small boat laden with explosives.
“The threat, especially to oil tankers which pass through the Arabian Gulf, could come from terrorism groups or even from our Northern border,” he said.
Tamim’s call for a draft plan came at a workshop on the role of police to protecting the environment.
GCC must follow
While the damage sustained by the M Start did not result in an oil spill, Tamim said the region lacks any coordinated program to deal with spills or other environmental disasters.
“We need to have plans for how to deal with future environment disasters which might be the result of such attacks. We cannot wait until we have a disaster before we start thinking of solutions; we need to have them in place.”
“There should be specialized teams equipped with the right training and equipment who would be able to act quickly and efficiently in such a crisis,” he added.
In August, the Director of Green Line Environmental Group (GLEG), Khaled al-Hajri told the Kuwaiti al-Watan newspaper that the Kuwaiti government is an accomplice with the Iranian government in the event of a health and environmental disaster, by saying that the government had assigned people who do not have "the faintest knowledge about environment which practically means that government has appointed people with no knowledge on how to deal with environmental issues which will ultimately lead to risking the lives of many innocent people."
Al-Hajri added that the so-called environmental leadership in the country has no idea on how to deal with any disaster-born out of the Iranian Bushehr nuclear plant.
Kuwait expressed its concerns about environmental disasters right after Tehran fueled its Bushehr nuclear plant in August.
Iran on Wednesday said that the Stuxnet worm virus did not hit Iran’s Bushehr’s nuclear station.
Iran has also been hit by the "Stuxnet" computer worm, which has been described as one of the "most refined pieces of malware ever discovered",
Computer hackers can unleash the Stuxnet worm is the first known malicious software of and open the door to a new era of cyber-warfare.