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26 July 2017, 12:45 | Floyd Cook
BREAKING NEWS: US Navy patrol boat fires warning shots at Iranian naval ship after it comes within 150 YARDS during 'tense encounter' in the Persian Gulf
The incident involved the USS Thunderbolt (pictured above in 1997), a Cyclone-class patrol ship that is now conducting exercises in the Persian Gulf along with other U.S. Navy warships.
A U.S. Navy ship fired multiple warning shots at an Iranian vessel in the Persian Gulf that came within 150 yards of the American ship, the Navy confirmed. In late April, the guided-missile destroyer Mahan was forced to fire warning flares to halt the approach of an IRGCN vessel in what was the seventh such encounter of the year. The Iranians ignored several warnings from the American boat, including via radio.
According to the US statement, the Iranian boat approached the USS Thunderbolt, coming within 137 meters (150 yards).
The episode marks the latest in a series of close encounters between USA ships and Iranian naval vessels.
The Iranian vessel did not respond when bridge-to-bridge communication was initiated by the US crew, the official said. 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. It said the Thunderbolt fired into the air "with the intention to provoke and create fear".
FOX News has updating details, including the last time a U.S. Navy warship fired warning shots at an Iranian vessel which approached too close.
Back in June, the USA claimed an Iranian boat aimed a laser on a US helicopter accompanying a formation of American ships in the Strait of Hormuz, at the mouth of the Persian Gulf. In January, a Navy destroyer fired warning shots at several Iranian attack boats that the US military claimed ignored prior warnings in the Strait of Hormuz.
Iranian forces view the American presence in the Gulf as a provocation by itself.
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