Monday 20 November 2017

Iran forces 'seize US cargo ship'

Iranian navy ship Credit: Reuters
Iranian navy ship Credit: Reuters Newsdesk Newsdesk

An Iranian force has reportedly seized a US cargo ship and directed it to Iran.

Iranian forces boarded a Marshall Islands-flagged cargo ship in the Gulf after patrol boats fired warning shots across its bow and ordered it deeper into Iranian waters as it was traveling through the Strait of Hormuz, the Pentagon said.

The ship, the MV Maersk Tigris, initially ignored Iranian patrol boats that ordered it deeper into Iranian territorial waters but complied after the vessels fired several warning shots, US Army Colonel Steve Warren said.

US forces in the region responded to distress calls from the Maersk Tigris, sending the destroyer USS Farragut to monitor the situation along with reconnaissance aircraft.

No US citizens were aboard the cargo ship, Warren said.

Saudi-owned Al Arabiya television said an Iranian "force" seized the US cargo ship and directed it to the Iranian port of Bandar Abbas.

The channel said the force had "opened fire" on the US ship, which it claims had "34 American sailors aboard".

The US Fifth Fleet in the Gulf Arab kingdom of Bahrain had no immediate comment on the report.

More to come...


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