The 11 vessels from the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps' navy (IRGCN) spent an hour making repeated ‘dangerous and harassing approaches’ near U.S. ships operating in international waters on April 15, 2020.
The U.S. ships, including four Navy vessels and two Coast Guard, were conducting joint operations with Army AH-64E Apache attack helicopters in the Persian Gulf.
The Iranian vessels came within 10 yards of the Coast Guard's Island-class cutter Maui and within 50 yards of the expeditionary mobile base (ESB) Lewis B. Puller.
The IRGCN vessels repeatedly crossed the bows and sterns of the U.S. vessels at extremely close range and high speeds. The dangerous passes increase the risk of miscalculation and collision.
A small to medium-sized coastal patrol vessel.
A vessel designed to perform large-scale logistics movements.
The ESB can support MH-53 and MH-60 helicopters and be upgraded to carry MV-22 tilt rotor aircraft.