Bab al-Mandab, Yemen
2 September 2022

The U.S. Navy reported that on 1 September it had “intercepted an Iranian warship that seized and detained two U.S. unmanned surface vessels operated by U.S. 5th Fleet in the Red Sea… The Iranian warship released the Saildrones”. Iran’s navy stated that its destroyer had found the USVs “abandoned” and “inevitably took action to stop the vessels in order to prevent possible terrorist incidents and prevented the occurrence of unforeseen accidents”. On 4 September, Iranian Chief of Staff Bagheri asserted: “Our vessels will not tolerate such [foreign unmanned] units in their routes and will take action against them in the same way that it has already happened”.

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