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USS Thunderbolt Fires Warning Shots to Stop Approaching Iranian Vessel
26 July 2017, 12:46 | Colleen Roy
US Navy ship fires warning shots at Iranian ship
The Cyclone class coastal patrol ship USS Thunderbolt (PC 12) transits along other PCs during an exercise in the Arabian Gulf.
The USS Thunderbolt opened fire after the Iranian boat ignored both physical and radio warnings and came within 150 yards of the U.S. Ship.
Iran unveiled its latest air defence missiles on Saturday.
The statement said the United States fired two shots into the air, adding that both vessels were in global waters at the time.
The Navy characterized the Iranian boat's actions as not following internationally recognized "rules of the road ... creating a risk for collision".
A U.S. official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the Iranian boat was armed but that the weapons were unmanned. Last month, a Navy Fifth Fleet spokesman, Commander Bill Urban, toldNewsweek that an Iranian vessel trained a laser on a U.S. CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter and turned its spotlight on the amphibious assault ship USS Bataan.
Officials characterized the actions of the Iranian boat as "unsafe and unprofessional", and not in accordance with global norms for interaction at sea.
The U.S. Navy ship then fired warning shots into the water over concerns about the possibility of a collision, a U.S. defense official said, adding that the Iranian ship then stopped approaching the U.S. ship but lingered in the area for some hours.
Hostility between the USA and Iran date back to the 1979 Islamic revolution, which overthrew the U.S. -backed monarchy in Tehran.
There have been several incidents between the United States and Iran in recent months, including one in June that involved an Iranian boat training a laser on a US helicopter above the Strait of Hormuz.
This article has been updated to include new information provided by the U.S. Navy.
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