Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Iran’s Guards Detain 10 U.S. Sailors | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
Select Page
Media ID: 55346477


Iran’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) detained 10 American sailors after a “broken navigation system” led them into Iranian waters, according to Iran’s state-run Press TV. Yet, U.S. officials have not confirmed the reason behind two American naval ships entering Iranian waters.

The U.S. sailors, seized in a Farsi island, are being interrogated to determine whether they “entered Iranian waters intentionally on an intelligence mission,” the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps said.

The sailors did not show resistance and will be released “as soon as the IRGC receives proper orders,” IRGC Navy Commander Admiral Ali Fadavi said on Iranian TV.

According to officials, the vessels were sailing in the Persian Gulf en route from Kuwait to Bahrain.
A senior defense official said no distress call was made by the ships.

This incident came days ahead of the expected implementation of a landmark nuclear accord between Iran and world powers to freeze Tehran’s nuclear program.

The lifting of sanctions in return for a halting of Tehran’s nuclear program is expected to benefit the IRGC, which is largely responsible for Iran’s nuclear research.

However, this incident could impede the pending implementation.
U.S. opponents of the nuclear deal considered the capture of the Navy sailors to as another of provocation by Tehran. Other incidents include ballistic missile tests that the United Nations charged violated a Security Council resolution.

“This kind of openly hostile action is not surprising,” Arkansas Republican Sen. Tom Cotton told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer. “It’s exactly what I and so many others predicted when President Obama was negotiating the nuclear deal with Iran — that it would embolden their aggression towards the United States and our allies in the region.”