In recent remarks by a military official, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) has verified its forces, on Friday, closely monitored the movements of US, British, and French naval commanders as they navigated the Strait of Hormuz aboard the USS Paul Hamilton, an American destroyer.
Brigadier General Abbas Gholamshahi, commander of the IRGC Navy’s First Zone, said on Saturday that this meticulous operation involved the use of drones and vessels.
Gholamshahi stressed that the IRGC Navy maintains round-the-clock monitoring of vessel movements in the Strait of Hormuz and the Persian Gulf. In previous instances, patrol vessels and the IRGC Navy’s Command Control Center in the Strait of Hormuz have detected and monitored the American warships upon its entry into the area, said the commander.
According to the Associated Press, guardsmen stood by uncovered machine guns on their decks, while sailors aboard the Paul Hamilton similarly stood by loaded machine guns as others shot photographs and video of the vessels.
Vice Admiral Brad Cooper, who supervises the US Navy’s Mideast-based 5th Fleet, reported that Iran’s IRGC ships came within 915 meters of the Paul Hamilton on Friday.
On Sunday, the IRGC released images showing that the USS Paul Hamilton destroyer has passed through the Strait of Hormuz along with a support vessel called TAKE6 and the commercial vessel ANVIL POINT.
In May, the IRGC Navy seized a foreign oil tanker trespassing in Iran’s territorial waters in the Strait of Hormuz. In response to the seizure, White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby announced that the United States would initiate a series of military moves in the Persian Gulf.
Iran regards the presence of US military vessels in the Persian Gulf as a threat to its national security and a source of tension and instability in the region.