U.S. Navy prevents Iranian ship from hijacking U.S. naval drone in Persian Gulf on the night from Monday to Tuesday local time in what the senior The US commander called the incident “egregious” and “unfounded.”
While US forces in in region were in transit international In the waters around 23:00 Monday, they saw the navy of the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. support The Shahid Baziar ship is towing an American-made maritime drone. also The US Navy Central Command reported that known as the unmanned surface ship Saildrone Explorer in a news release.
The US Navy Coastal Patrol Ship Thunderbolt wasoperating nearby and responded immediately,” the Navy said. After the Iranians attached the line to a naval drone, US forces in in area informed directly with Iranians say they wanted drone backUSA defense official said.
A US Navy patrol boat then approached the maritime drone, and the US 5th Fleet launched an MH-60S Sea Hawk helicopter from Bahrain and positioned it over the drone, releasing and defense official said.
After the US response with both the coastal vessel and the Sea Hawk helicopter, the Iranian vessel disconnected the towline from the U.S. drone and left area four hours later, the report said.
The US Navy then resumed operations “without incident,” the report said. added.
The incident took place in critical time in relations between Iran and the United States. Negotiations to restart the nuclear deal with Iran are at a sensitive stage, and US officials have expressed some optimism about latest efforts. However, they emphasized that gaps remain between two parties.
Vice Admiral Brad Cooper, Commanding of US Naval Central Command, the US 5th Fleet and the Joint Maritime Forces called the actions of the IRGC “blatant, unfounded and inconsistent.” with in behavior of professional marine force” in incident statement.
“US Navy remain alert and will continue to fly, swim and work anywhere international law allows promoting rules-based on international order throughout regionCooper said. in statement.
General Michael “Eric” Kurilla, Commander of US Central Command, which oversees the US military presence in The Middle East reacted strongly, saying that Iran’s actions were illegal.
“Professionalism and competence of Team of The USS Thunderbolt prevented these illegal actions by Iran,” Kurilla said. in statement. “This incident once again demonstrates Iran’s ongoing destabilizing, illegal and unprofessional activities in Near East.”
The maritime drone that the IRGCN tried to hijack is called “USA. government property as well as equipped with sensors, radars and cameras for navigation and data collection,” the message says. drone “not store sensitive or secret information,” release added.