AUGUST 27, 2014 — The USCG Mononomoy, which is attached to the U.S. Fifth Fleet in the Arabian Gulf yesterday fired on an Iranian dhow in what U.S. military officials described as a defensive move after the crew of the Iranian vessel trained a machine gun on an inflatable dispatched by the cutter to query the dhow.
A statement issued by the U.S Fifth Fleet in Bahrain said the incident occurred as the Coast Guard was conducting a routine maritime security operation.
The American vessel fired a single shot at the dhow, but military officials said they did not know whether it hit the Iranian boat, which left the scene and did not communicate with the American crew. No U.S. personnel were reported injured.
U.S. military rules of engagement state that unit commanders always have the inherent right and obligation to exercise unit self-defense in response to a hostile act or demonstrated hostile intent.