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People's Daily Online

U.S. ship fires warning shots in encounter with Iranian vessels in Strait of Hormuz

People's Daily Online

(Xinhua) 08:25, May 11, 2021

The Iranian boats approached the U.S. formation at high speed, closing in as close as 150 yards, and the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Maui fired about 30 warning shots from a machine gun before the Iranian boats left, the Pentagon said.

WASHINGTON, May 10 (Xinhua) -- The Pentagon said on Monday that a U.S. Coast Guard ship fired warning shots during a close encounter with Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy (IRGCN) fast boats in the Strait of Hormuz earlier in the day.

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said in a daily briefing that six U.S. Navy vessels escorting USS Georgia, a guided missile submarine, encountered 13 IRGCN fast attack boats while transiting the Strait of Hormuz.

He said the Iranian boats approached the U.S. formation at high speed, closing in as close as 150 yards (about 137 meters), and the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Maui fired about 30 warning shots from a machine gun before the Iranian boats left.

It was the second such encounter in two weeks. In late April, a U.S. Navy patrol ship fired warning shots as IRGCN vessels approached to an "unnecessarily close range" in international waters of the northern Persian Gulf.

The incident came days after the U.S. Navy seized an illicit shipment of weapons, including thousands of small arms and dozens of anti-tank guided missiles, from a stateless dhow in the North Arabian Sea. An anonymous official told U.S. media that the Navy's initial investigation indicated the vessel came from Iran.

The incident also came amid indirect talks between the United States and Iran in Vienna to revive the Iran nuclear deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.



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