By Mark Moore, NY POST April 22, 2020 |
President Trump said he authorized the US Navy to “destroy” any Iranian gunboats if they hound American vessels.
“I have instructed the United States Navy to shoot down and destroy any and all Iranian gunboats if they harass our ships at sea,” the president said in a tweet on Wednesday, without providing more details.
The post comes a week after 11 Iranian gunboats harassed US Navy and Coast Guard ships in the Persian Gulf, the Wall Street Journal reported.
The Navy called Iran’s maneuvers “dangerous and provocative.”
The boats, part of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps navy, approached within 10 yards of the Coast Guard cutter Maui, the report said, citing the US Navy.
The US ships responded by sending warnings through bridge-to-bridge radio and blasting horns.
After an hour, the Iranian boats backed off and “opened distance between them.”
The US ships had been conducting military exercises in that section of the Persian Gulf.
Tensions have been elevated in the Persian Gulf region since last year after Iran attacked a Saudi oil installation, shot down a US surveillance drone, and boarded several international ships.<