A patrol boat from the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy "interacted in an unsafe and unprofessional manner" with U.S. Navy ships passing through the Strait of Hormuz on Monday evening, according to U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM).
The Iranian patrol boat approached the expeditionary sea base platform ship USS Lewis B. Puller and guided-missile destroyer USS The Sullivans as they were conducting a routine transit in international waters, according to a CENTCOM press release.
The Iranian patrol boat tried to blind the bridge with a spotlight and crossed within 150 yards of the American vessels — "dangerously close, particularly at night," CENTCOM said.
The American ships deescalated the confrontation with audible warnings and nonlethal lasers and the U.S. vessels continued on without further incident, according to the statement.
"The IRGCN’s actions violated international standards of professional and safe maritime behavior, increasing the risk of miscalculation and collision," CENTOM stated.
"This dangerous action in international waters is indicative of Iran’s destabilizing activity across the Middle East," added Col. Joe Buccino, CENTCOM spokesman.
The action comes just a month after the U.S.S. Lewis B. Puller caught a fishing trawler smuggling more than 50 tons of ammunition rounds, fuses and propellants for rockets in the Gulf of Oman on a maritime route from Iran to Yemen.
On Nov. 8, U.S. Navy personnel found more than 1 million rounds of 7.62mm ammunition; 25,000 rounds of 12.7mm ammunition; nearly 7,000 proximity fuses for rockets; and over 2,100 kilograms of propellant used to launch rocket propelled grenades according to a Dec. 3 press release from U.S. Naval Forces Central Command.
“This significant interdiction clearly shows that Iran’s unlawful transfer of lethal aid and destabilizing behavior continues,” said Vice Adm. Brad Cooper, commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, U.S. 5th Fleet and Combined Maritime Forces. “U.S. naval forces remain focused on deterring and disrupting dangerous and irresponsible maritime activity in the region.”
© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.