Kitack Lim has condemned the attacks on two tankers that took place off the coast of Oman earlier this week.
Speaking during the Maritime Safety Committee (MSC) 101st session at IMO Headquarters in London, Secretary-General Lim said:
"These suspected attacks, coupled with the attacks in the UAE last month, concern me greatly. IMO has developed a comprehensive regime of regulation through the ISPS Code and the SUA Conventions and Protocols to prevent and respond to unprovoked, unlawful attacks on merchant shipping.
The threat to ships and their crews, peaceably going about their business, is intolerable. I urge all Member States to redouble their efforts to work together to find a lasting solution to ensure the safety and security of international shipping around the globe and protection of the marine environment.
I will carefully review the results of the investigations, once they are completed, to consider if additional IMO action is warranted."
The two oil tankers were attacked near the strategic strait of Hormuz – one of the world’s busiest oil routes – leaving one ablaze and both adrift.
The crews from both tankers were evacuated.
Front Altair is reported to have been carrying 75,000 tonnes of naphtha, a petrochemical feedstock, while Kokuka Courageous, which was en route from Saudi Arabia to Singapore, is said to have been breached just above the waterline.
The blasts came a month after four oil tankers were damaged in an attack off the coast of the United Arab Emirates.
The US is blaming Iran for all of the attacks – but Iran is denying any involvement in any of the incidents.