Navy: New ‘warning shot’ encounter in Gulf, described by Iran, was ‘safe and professional’

Navy: New ‘warning shot’ encounter in Gulf, described by Iran, was ‘safe and professional’
Navy sailors hold a gunfire exercise on USS Nimitz (CVN-68), underway in the Pacific. (US Navy image)

[Ed. – Iran reported this one, and referred to “warning shots” being fired by a U.S. Navy ship.  But the U.S. says a helicopter launched flares after a high-speed approach by Iranian patrol boats.]

The US navy’s Bahrain-based fifth fleet said the incident happened while one of its helicopters was on a routine patrol in international airspace. The aircraft saw several Guard vessels approaching US ships “at a high rate of speed” and sent out flares after receiving no response when it tried to establish communications, the navy said. That prompted the Iranian boats to halt their approach.

After communications were established, the US saw the Iranians conduct a “gun exercise”, which involved firing weapons into the water away from US ships, said a navy spokesman, Lt Ian M McConnaughey.

The navy described the encounter “as safe and professional”.

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