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US Navy says it fired warning shots at IRGC vessels in Gulf waters

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US Navy forces said Tuesday that they had fired warning shots at vessels from Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) after they continued “close-range maneuvers” within yards of an American military ship and patrol boat.

The incident took place Monday night, according to a statement from the US Navy, which said that three IRGC Navy (IRGCN) attack vessels disregarded the safety of other ships in international waters near the north Arabian Gulf.

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“The US crews issued multiple warnings via bridge-to-bridge radio and loud-hailer devices, but the IRGCN vessels continued their close-range maneuvers. The crew of Firebolt then fired warning shots, and the IRGCN vessels moved away to a safe distance from the US vessels,” the statement read.

The incident comes as Washington and Tehran engage in their third round of indirect talks over a new nuclear deal, which are taking place in Vienna.

Iran and its proxies in the region have repeatedly threatened and disrupted ships in the Arabian Gulf.

In its statement on Tuesday, the US military warned that the IRGCN’s moves increase the “risk of miscalculation and/or collision.”

Adding that they were not seeking any conflict, the US Navy cautioned against testing its forces. “Our forces are trained, however, to conduct effective defensive measures when necessary,” the Navy said.

The latest incident comes after a similar one take place on April 2.