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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

US: Iran Launched 'Provocative' Missile Test Near US Warship

by VOA News December 30, 2015

The United States has accused Iran of launching a 'highly provocative' missile test last week near an American aircraft carrier passing through international shipping lanes in the Strait of Hormuz.

U.S. military officials say the missiles passed within 1,500 meters on Saturday of the aircraft carrier, the USS Harry S. Truman. The officials, who spoke to Western media under condition of anonymity, say Iran's navy gave a radio announcement less than an hour before firing the missiles, telling ships to steer clear of the area.

In addition to the USS Harry S. Truman, there were several other vessels in the area, including the destroyer USS Buckley, a French frigate and merchant ships.

None of the missiles were fired at any of the ships, which did not need to take any evasive actions.

The incident exposed how tensions between the two countries can escalate, even after the signing of a landmark nuclear deal.

'While most interactions between Iranian forces and the U.S. Navy are professional, safe and routine, this event was not and runs contrary to efforts to ensure freedom of navigation and maritime safety in the global commons,' U.S. Central Command spokesman Kyle Raines said in an emailed statement to Reuters.

The strategic Persian Gulf waterway, which sees nearly a third of all oil traded by sea pass through it, has been the scene of past confrontations between the U.S. and Iran, including a one-day naval battle in 1988.

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