BBCI: US Navy fires warning shots at Iranian ship in Gulf
Jul 26, 2017, 00:45
At the time of the shooting, the Thunderbolt, a Cyclone-class patrol boat, was escorted by the USS Vella Gulf, a 567-foot long guided missile cruiser, and two U.S. Coast guard vessels.
Earlier on Tuesday, a US official was quoted by media as saying that warning shots were fired from a US Navy vessel towards an Iranian boat north of the Persian Gulf.
There will be "serious consequences" unless Iran releases American prisoners and stops using "hostage taking as a tool of state policy", Mr Trump said recently. The U.S. patrol ship then ultimately opened fire with five short bursts of its.50-caliber heavy machine gun to drive away the incoming vessel. It did not respond to any signals, they did not respond to any bridge-to-bridge calls, they felt there was no choice except to fire the warning shots, ' the defense official told AFP on condition of anonymity.
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The shots were used as a last resort after the Iranian ship failed to respond to calls over the radio and sound signals from the American ships, including five blasts from the U.S. Navy ship's whistle, an global symbol for danger. It said the Thunderbolt fired into the air "with the intention to provoke and create fear". This is also the closest that an Iranian vessel has come to a USA ship in the Gulf in at least a year.
Unsafe interactions between USA and Iranian vessels are far from uncommon. In January, a Navy destroyer fired warning shots at several Iranian attack boats that the USA military claimed ignored prior warnings in the Strait of Hormuz. They in turn have accused the U.S. Navy of unprofessional behavior, especially in the Strait of Hormuz, the mouth of the Persian Gulf through which a third of all oil trade by sea passes.
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