Iran pursues U.S. in Gulf of Aden, Iranian media claims
An Iranian naval fleet chased a U.S. warship and military planes through the waters off the southern coast of Yemen late Monday in yet another provocative encounter between the two nations, according to Iranian state media reports.
A U.S. warship and several planes reportedly “changed their direction” on Monday after encountering an Iranian naval fleet during a patrol in the Gulf of Aden near Yemen, Iranian state media revealed.
The U.S. military assets fled “after they came close to an Iranian naval fleet and were warned to move away,” Iran’s state-controlled Fars News Agency reported. Iran also released video of the incident.
The run-in between the United States and Iranian militaries is just the latest in several tense confrontations between the countries near Yemen, where Iran is believed to be smuggling weapons to opposition forces.
Iranian media now claims that the Islamic Republic’s naval fleets chased after two U.S. reconnaissance planes and a Navy destroyer.
Two “U.S. reconnaissance planes named P3C [Papa 3 Charlie] and U.S. Navy destroyer, DDG81, approached several Iranian warships in a provocative move, ignoring the internationally set five-mile standard distance from Iran’s 34th fleet of warships deployed in the Gulf of Aden,” Fars reported on Tuesday.
“The U.S. Navy vessel and planes then received a warning from Iranian Destroyer ‘Alborz,’ and rapidly changed direction,” the report claimed.
Iranian military officials on Tuesday said Iran is prepared to defend itself in the region.
“Checking foreign warships in the international waters and surveilling potential threats to Iran’s national interests is our essential responsibility,” Commodore Mostafa Tajeddini, the commander of Iran’s 34th flotilla of warships, was quoted as saying on Tuesday.
Iran’s 34th fleet will reportedly stay in the Gulf of Aden for three months to conduct “anti-piracy patrols.” The fleet is comprised of an Iranian destroyer and helicopter-carrying warship, according to Fars.
Full article: Report: Iranian Navy Chases After U.S. Warships (Washington Free Beacon)