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Iran Tried To Seize 2 Oil Tankers Near Strait Of Hormuz, Fired Shot At One: US Navy

An Iranian Revolutionary Guard vessel watches an American warship in the Strait of Hormuz/Photo/AFP.

Iran reportedly fired shots at one of the two oil tankers as it attempted to board them in the strategic Strait of Hormuz.

It said that both times the U.S. Navy’s response caused the Iranian navy ships to back off, and both commercial ships continued on their respective voyages.

“The Iranian navy did attempt to seize commercial tankers lawfully transiting international waters,” said Cmdr. Tim Hawkins, spokesman for the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet. “The U.S. Navy responded immediately and prevented those seizures.”

He said that due to the gunfire, there were no casualties or damages on the second vessel. 

Many of the events have occurred in and near the Strait of Hormuz, the narrow opening of the Gulf through which 20% of all crude oil passes. According to the U.S. Navy, Iran has seized at least five commercial vessels in the last two years and has harassed numerous others.

Meanwhile, Iranian media released footage of masked Iranian navy commandos conducting a helicopter-borne operation to board an oil tanker headed towards the U.S. in the Gulf of Oman in April. 

Iran claimed the tanker was seized after colliding with another Iranian vessel but offered no supporting documentation. In the past, Iran has taken control of commercial ships as a negotiating chip with the West.

The U.S. and Iran have several differences, including geopolitical, alliances and Nuclear. The tensions have increased since the Trump administration neglected and withdrew from the nuclear agreement in 2015. Meanwhile, several reports allegedly said Iran provides Russia with armed drones for its war against Ukraine.