Pictured: Moment Iranian warship aggressively cuts across the bows of U.S. Navy ships in international waters of the Persian Gulf as tensions grow

 An Iranian warship repeatedly crossed the bows of U.S. military vessels in international waters in an 'unsafe and unprofessional interaction,' the U.S. Navy said on Tuesday. 

The tense encounter in the Persian Gulf on April 2 was the first such incident in about a year amid wider turmoil in the region over Tehran's tattered nuclear deal.

Images released by the Navy showed a ship commanded by Iran's paramilitary Revolutionary Guard cut in front of the USCGC Monomoy, causing the Coast Guard vessel to come to an abrupt stop with its engine smoking on April 2.

The Iranian ship, Harth 55, also did the same with another Coast Guard vessel, the USCGC Wrangell, said Commander Rebecca Rebarich, a spokeswoman for the Navy's Mideast-based 5th Fleet.

Iranian ship Harth 55 is seen cutting across the bow of the USCGC Wrangell in the Persian Gulf on April 2, the first such encounter in nearly a year

Iranian ship Harth 55 is seen cutting across the bow of the USCGC Wrangell in the Persian Gulf on April 2, the first such encounter in nearly a year

The Iranian Revolutionary Guard vessel also cut in front of the U.S. Coast Guard ship USCGC Monomoy in the Persian Gulf in the same encounter

The Iranian Revolutionary Guard vessel also cut in front of the U.S. Coast Guard ship USCGC Monomoy in the Persian Gulf in the same encounter


Iran did not immediately acknowledge the incident, which resulted in no injuries or damage.

'The U.S. crews issued multiple warnings via bridge-to-bridge radio, five short blasts from the ships´ horns, and while the Harth 55 responded to the bridge-to-bridge radio queries, they continued the unsafe maneuvers,' Rebarich said. 

'After approximately three hour of the U.S. issuing warning and conducting defensive maneuvers, the (Iranian) vessels maneuvered away from the U.S. ships and opened distance between them.'

The interaction marked the first 'unsafe and unprofessional' incident involving the Iranians since April 15, 2020, Rebarich said. However, Iran had largely stopped such incidents in 2018 and nearly in the entirety of 2019, she said.

Iran did not immediately acknowledge the incident, which resulted in no injuries or damage

Iran did not immediately acknowledge the incident, which resulted in no injuries or damage 

In 2017, the Navy recorded 14 instances of what it describes as 'unsafe and or unprofessional' interactions with Iranians forces. It recorded 35 in 2016, and 23 in 2015.

The incidents at sea almost always involve the Revolutionary Guard, which reports only to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. 

Some analysts believe the incidents are meant in part to squeeze moderate President Hassan Rouhani´s administration after the 2015 nuclear deal. 

The Revolutionary Guard reports only to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei (above), and some believe the incidents are meant to squeeze moderate President Hassan Rouhani

The Revolutionary Guard reports only to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei (above), and some believe the incidents are meant to squeeze moderate President Hassan Rouhani

They include a 2016 incident in which Iranian forces captured and held overnight 10 U.S. sailors who strayed into the Islamic Republic´s territorial waters.

The incident comes as Iran negotiates with world powers in Vienna over Tehran and Washington returning to the 2015 nuclear deal. 

It also follows a series of incidents across the Mideast attributed to a shadow war between Iran and Israel, which includes attacks on regional shipping and sabotage at Iran's Natanz nuclear facility.

Pictured: Moment Iranian warship aggressively cuts across the bows of U.S. Navy ships in international waters of the Persian Gulf as tensions grow Pictured: Moment Iranian warship aggressively cuts across the bows of U.S. Navy ships in international waters of the Persian Gulf as tensions grow Reviewed by STATION GOSSIP on 08:46 Rating: 5

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