Marine Nationale Atlantique 2 Deploys to Mali Region

September 13, 2019 (Google Translation) – On Tuesday, 3 September, an ATLANTIC 2 (ATL2) landed on the runway of the planned air base (BAP) of Niamey for a mission to the benefit of the Barkhane force. This Navy aircraft is regularly deployed over the Sahel-Saharan strip (SSB). Weighing more than 40 tons, this aircraft is initially designed for maritime patrols and anti-submarine missions. Versatile, it is an excellent vector for probing the depth of a desert area like BSS. Alongside the REAPER and MIRAGE 2000 drones, this aircraft complements the…

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Turkish Businessman Sentenced to 27 Months Imprisonment for Conspiracy to Violate U.S. Sanctions by Exporting Marine Equipment from the United States to Iran

September 3, 2019 – Resit Tavan, a Turkish Businessman and owner of the Istanbul-based Turkish business Ramor Dis Ticaret Ltd. (also known as the “Ramor Group”) was sentenced on Thursday, Aug. 29, 2019, in Federal District Court in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, to 27 months imprisonment in connection with his conviction for conspiracy to violate U.S. sanctions by exporting specialized marine equipment from the United States to Iran between 2013 to 2015. On April 2, 2019, Tavan, a Turkish citizen, had pleaded guilty to a conspiracy to violate U.S. sanctions on Iran…

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US Imposes New Sanctions Designations on Iran’s Space Program as Tehran Continues to Use Civilian Space Agencies to Advance its Ballistic Missile Programs

September 3, 2019 – Today, the Department of State designated the Iran Space Agency and two of its research institutes under Executive Order (E.O.) 13382 for engaging in proliferation-sensitive activities. This is the first time the United States is designating Iran’s civilian space agency for activities that advance its ballistic missile program. The United States will not allow Iran to use its space launch program as cover to advance its ballistic missile programs. Iran’s August 29 attempt to launch a space launch vehicle underscores the urgency of the threat. These…

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Royal Navy Has Escorted Over 90 Ships Through Strait of Hormuz

September 2, 2019 – Nearly six million tonnes of British shipping has been safeguarded by the Royal Navy in the first two months of protecting vessels from unwanted aggression. Nearly 90 British merchant ships were safely shepherded through the Strait of Hormuz by frigate HMS Montrose and destroyer HMS Duncan during a hectic two months responding to threats by Tehran. Montrose passed through the narrow gateway to the Gulf 38 times – each time observed by Iranian forces, broadcasting on radios, with drones watching every move overhead and boats often…

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HMS Duncan Refueled by USNS Alan Shepard

August 22, 2019 – HMS Duncan, one of two operational Type 45s, met up with USNS Alan Shepard to refuel before heading back to duties protecting British-flagged shipping in the Strait of Hormuz. Alongside HMS Montrose, the Type 45 destroyer is committed to ensuring freedom of navigation and safeguarding global trade passing through the narrow channel between Oman and Iran. Protection of one of the busiest waterways in the world is thirsty work for an 8,500-tonne warship, meaning her pit stop with the Americans keeps her ticking along for further…

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Chief Minister’s Statement on Release of Tanker Grace 1

August 15, 2019 – On the 3rd July I specified the very large crude carrier, the Grace 1, under the Sanctions Regulations. The designation of the vessel arose from information providing Her Majesty’s Government of Gibraltar with reasonable grounds to suspect that the Grace 1 was being used in breach of applicable EU Sanctions against Syria. The information suggested that the vessel was bound for the Baniyas Oil Refinery in Syria where it would supply its cargo of 2.1m barrels of crude oil to the Assad regime. At 2am on…

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NATO Statement on Iran’s Seizure of Two Ships in the Strait of Hormuz

July 20, 2019 – We condemn the seizure of two commercial ships in the Strait of Hormuz. This represents a clear challenge to international freedom of navigation. We urge Iran to immediately release the ships and their crew. The UK has made clear that their priority is to address the situation through dialogue and diplomacy. NATO supports all diplomatic efforts to resolve this situation. All Allies remain concerned by Iran’s destabilizing activities.

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IMO Condemns Tanker attacks in Strait of Hormuz and Sea of Oman

July 18, 2019 – The Council of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) has condemned recent attacks on commercial shipping in the Strait of Hormuz and Sea of Oman at its meeting in London held from 15-19 July. After debate, the IMO Council decided to condemn the attacks and expressed its concern over the grave danger to life and the serious risks to navigational safety and the environment to which such incidents may give rise. The Council also emphasised the need for flag States and shipowners and operators to review the…

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U.S. Central Command Statement: Iranians shoot down U.S. drone

June 20, 2019 – “U.S. Central Command can confirm that a U.S. Navy Broad Area Maritime Surveillance (or BAMS-D) ISR aircraft was shot down by an Iranian surface-to-air missile system while operating in international airspace over the Strait of Hormuz at approximately 11:35 p.m. GMT on June 19, 2019. Iranian reports that the aircraft was over Iran are false. This was an unprovoked attack on a U.S. surveillance asset in international airspace. The BAMS-D is a RQ-4A Global Hawk High-Altitude Long Endurance (HALE) Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) and provides real-time…

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U.S. CENTCOM Statement on June 13 Limpet Mine Attack in the Gulf of Oman

June 13, 2019 – U.S. Naval Forces in the region received two separate distress calls at 6:12 a.m. local time from the motor tanker (M/T) Altair and a second one at 7a.m. local time from the M/T Kokuka Courageous. Both vessels were in international waters in the Gulf of Oman approximately 10 nautical miles apart at the time of the distress calls. USS Bainbridge was approximately 40 nautical miles away from the M/T Altair at the time of the attack, and immediately began closing the distance. At 8:09 a.m. local…

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CENTCOM Statement on Death of USS Cole Bombing Operative

January 6, 2019 – U.S. Central Command spokesman Capt. Bill Urban released the following statement Jan. 6 on the death of Jamal al-Badawi: “U.S. Central Command has confirmed that Jamal al-Badawi was killed in a precision strike in Marib governate [Yemen] on Jan. 1. “Jamal al-Badawi was a legacy al Qaeda operative in Yemen involved in the USS Cole bombing. U.S. forces confirmed the results of the strike following a deliberate assessment process. “Jamal al-Badawi was indicted by a federal grand jury in 2003, charged with 50 counts of various…

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Japan Renews Horn of Africa Mission for Another Year

November 9, 2018 (Google Translation) – Regarding the number of pirates and other incidents occurring off the coast of Somalia and the Gulf of Aden, more than 200 cases occurred annually from 2009 to 2011, but the number of cases of piracy, etc. occurred in the international community including anti-piracy activities by SDF troops Due to continuous efforts, we are currently at a low level. However, poverty in Somalia, the fundamental cause of creating pirates, has not yet been solved, and the situation remains unchanged in circumstances where you must…

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USS Cole Remembers – 18 Years Later

October 12, 2018 – In remembrance of the attack on the guided-missile destroyer USS Cole (DDG 67), family, friends and service members – both past and present – gathered at Naval Station Norfolk, Oct. 12, to commemorate the 18th anniversary of the ship’s bombing, with a wreath-laying ceremony and tolling of the bell. The solemn ceremony honored and celebrated the 17 shipmates who perished in the attack, as well as the resolve and warfighting attitude the “Mighty Cole” continues to embrace. Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command, Adm. Christopher Grady who…

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USMC F-35B Conducts First Combat Strikes in CENTCOM AOR

September 27, 2018 – The Marine Corps F-35B, Lightning II, conducted its first combat strikes in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility in support of Operation Freedom’s Sentinel in Afghanistan, Sept. 27. During this mission the F-35B conducted an air strike in support of ground clearance operations, and the strike was deemed successful by the ground force commander. “The F-35B is a significant enhancement in theater amphibious and air warfighting capability, operational flexibility, and tactical supremacy,” said Vice Adm. Scott Stearney, commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central command. “As part…

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USS Preble Responds to Distress Call from Iranian Vessel

USS Preble (DDG 88) rendered aid to a stranded Iranian fishing vessel, Dec. 16 at approximately 1:00 p.m. local time while transiting the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations. An MH-60R Sea Hawk assigned to the Easyriders of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 37, currently embarked with Preble, was conducting routine flight operations in the vicinity when they spotted the Iranian vessel approximately 60 nautical miles from the nearest land.  “The distressed mariners were seen waving their hands over their head in an effort to get the attention of our…

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