Iranian boats reportedly approached a British tanker near the Strait of Hormuz, attempting to force the British vessel into territorial waters, but the five Iranian vessels were driven away by a British military ship, a senior U.S. defense official said Wednesday.
No shots were fired in the incident, which the senior defense official said occurred when five armed Iranian boats approached the British tanker, but those vessels were driven away by the HMS Montrose, which was around 4 miles behind the tanker, the senior defense official said.
The incident is the latest near the Strait of Hormuz, which is a strategic waterway off Iran’s coast and which separates the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman.
Capt. Bill Urban, a spokesman for U.S. Central Command, said in a statement that the U.
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S. military was “aware of the reports of Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corp Navy’s FAC/FIAC harassment and attempts to interfere with the passage of the UK-flagged merchant vessel British Heritage today near the Strait of Hormuz.”
Tensions have escalated between US and Iran since the former renewed sanctions on the latter.