Iran is Watching All US Ships in Gulf; European Naval Mission to Counter Iran’s ‘Piracy’
Iran says it’s watching all US ships in Gulf, keeping record of their movements
The head of Iran’s navy said Tuesday that Tehran is observing all US ships in the Gulf region and keeps an archive of their movements, The Times of Israel reported.
“We observe all enemy ships, particularly (those of) America, point-by-point from their origin until the moment they enter the region,” Rear Admiral Hossein Khanzadi said, according to a report on Iran’s Young Journalists news site, cited by Reuters.
“We have complete images and a large archive of the daily and moment-by-moment traffic of the coalition forces and America,” Khandazi added, noting that the images of the vessels were captured using drones.
The senior naval officer also said that Iran will hold joint naval exercises with “allied countries” for the first time in March 2020, without specifying which nations would take part in the exercises.
Khandazi’s statement came amid elevated tensions in the Gulf after Iranian authorities seized a British-flagged tanker there on Friday.
Britain calls for European naval mission to counter Iran’s ‘piracy’
Britain called on Monday for a European-led naval mission to ensure safe shipping through the Strait of Hormuz, days after Iran seized a British-flagged tanker in what London described as an act of “state piracy” in the strategic waterway, Reuters reported.
Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt outlined the plans to parliament after a meeting of COBR, the government’s emergency committee, which discussed London’s response to Friday’s capture of the Stena Impero tanker by Iranian commandos at sea.
“Under international law, Iran had no right to obstruct the ship’s passage – let alone board her. It was therefore an act of state piracy,” Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt told parliament.
“We will now seek to put together a European-led maritime protection mission to support safe passage of both crew and cargo in this vital region,” Hunt said.
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Source: Reuters, The Times of Israel