WASHINGTON – Iranian media reported on Friday that there was no encounter in the central Persian Gulf between a U.S. Navy ship and a small Iranian high-speed boat in the central Persian Gulf.
A U.S. Navy official earlier reported the USS Typhoon had tried unsuccessfully to establish radio contact with the Iranian boat after it came within an estimated 200 yards of the Typhoon on Thursday, outside Iranian territorial waters. A Navy official said the ship then fired the flare and continued on its way without incident.Two other similar Iranian boats in the area did not come as close.
The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter, said there were no signs any boat was armed.
But Iranian English-language Press TV quoted an unnamed official with the Islamic Revolutionary Guard as denying "any new confrontation" in the Persian Gulf.
"The Iranian boats approached the U.S. warship in the Persian Gulf for a routine check," the official was quoted as saying on Press TV.
Meanwhile, the Web site of Iran's Arabic-language Al-Alam TV cited an unnamed senior Iranian Navy official as saying that "no accident took place between the Iranian boats and the U.S. ship, but there was a recognition of the U.S. forces' presence in the Persian Gulf."
This passed in a "normal way ... and according to protocol, and then the boats left the scene with no accident whatsoever," the Iranian Navy official said.
This marked at least the second U.S. Navy encounter with an aggressive Iranian high-speed boat this year. In January, Iranian boats made what the Navy called provocative moves near a U.S. ship in the Strait of Hormuz.