In a bid to protect around 20% of the country’s oil supplies, the US Navy has begun deploying warships along the Strait of Hormuz, which sits between the Gulf of Oman and the Persian Gulf, to protect from a repeat of the detainment that took place of a Maersk ship recently.
The vessel was detained over an alleged unresolved cargo claim, however all crew are safe with no casualties reported.
The New York Times quoted a Defense Department Official as saying: “This is more of a show-of-the-flag presence than any sort of specific threat they’re trying to prevent. It’s a freedom-of-navigation issue.”
An unnamed Senior Military Official added: “Bottom line, this is a precautionary move to simply maintain a credible US naval presence and ensure freedom of navigation. It’s what navies do. We’ll continue to monitor and assess as we seek to keep tensions low and adjust as needed.”
The initial incident involving the Maersk Tigris happened on Tuesday April 28, 2015 where warning shots were fired at the bow of the ship after the captain refused to obey Iranian orders to move the vessel.
The officially verified reason for the ship’s detainment has not yet been confirmed.