A U.S. aircraft carrier on March 21 deployed helicopter gunships to track two sets of Iranian fast-attack vessels during a confrontation in the Strait of Hormuz, the U.S. Navy said.
Navy commanders told Reuters the USS George H.W. Bush confronted the Iranian boats after they approached a U.S.-led, five-vessel flotilla as it entered the Strait, Reuters reported.
It was the first time a U.S. aircraft carrier entered the narrow waterway, where up to 30 percent of global oil exports pass annually, since President Donald Trump took office.
“What I don’t like about that is they (Iranian boats) were in the middle of international transit waters (while) we had a right to be there as we were exercising freedom of navigation on our way into the Arabian Gulf,” Rear Adm. Kenneth Whitesell, commander of the Carrier Strike Group 2, was quoted by Reuters as having told journalists.
“They also had weapons uncovered as some of the cameras were able to tell. They had some of the weapons manned. We also have aerial data that they were arming all of these weapons,” Whitesell said.
The March 21 incident ended without a shot being fired, the U.S. officials told Reuters. There was no immediate comment from Iran.
Full article: U.S. carrier confronts two sets of fast boats in Strait of Hormuz (World Tribune)