US eyes 55-ship surveillance mission off Iran in Nov.: source

Persian Gulf/SoH

WASHINGTON (Kyodo) — U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration is planning to form an international maritime surveillance mission involving 55 vessels in a key waterway off Iran in November, a source familiar with the plan said Thursday.

The plan came to light amid heightened tensions between the United States and Iran following recent attacks on major oil facilities in Saudi Arabia, an incident Washington has blamed on Tehran.

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Source: mainichi.jp

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UAE says joining global maritime security coalition

Persian Gulf/SoH

CAIRO, Sept 19 (Reuters) – The United Arab Emirates is joining an international maritime mission to protect commercial shipping in the Strait of Hormuz and other areas, state news agency WAM said on Thursday.

The ​​operation area for the International Maritime Security Construct covers the Strait of Hormuz, Bab al-Mandab, the Sea of ​​Oman and the Arabian Gulf, WAM said.

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Source: reuters.com

Iran to hold annual Gulf drills with 200 Guards frigates – report

DUBAI, Sept 18 (Reuters) – Iran will hold its annual military parade on Sept. 22 in the Gulf with 200 frigates of its elite Revolutionary Guards Corps, Iran Front Page reported on Wednesday, at a time of spiked tension between Tehran and Washington.

“Some 200 IRGC frigates will take part in a parade of military units in the Persian Gulf… on Sept. 22 to mark the beginning of Iran-Iraq in 1980,” the IFP cited military sources as saying.

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Source: yahoo.com

Iran seizes vessel in Gulf for allegedly smuggling diesel – reports

Reports come amid raised tensions after weekend attack on major Saudi oil installation

Iran’s Revolutionary Guards have seized a vessel in the Gulf for allegedly smuggling 250,000 litres of diesel fuel to the United Arab Emirates, Iran’s semi-official news agency ISNA has reported.

“It was detained near Iran’s Greater Tunb island in the Persian Gulf … the crew have been handed over to legal authorities in the southern Hormozgan province,” ISNA said on Monday, without elaborating on the nationalities of the crewmen.

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Source: theguardian.com

Iranian targeting of shipping in the Arabian Gulf ‘changes the game’ by raising risks to new levels

Insurance and shipping leaders said specific targeting of UK and US crew by Iran has left the industry to grapple with escalating tensions between Tehran and the West.

Nick Busvine, a partner at the strategic intelligence firm Herminius, told The National the drive from Tehran to take British and American hostages while targeting commercial shipping in the Arabian Gulf “changes the game” for the insurance industry.

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Source: hellenicshippingnews.com

Shipowners call for ‘freedom of navigation’

By Jim Wilson

Three major international ocean shipping representative bodies — the International Chamber of Shipping, the Asian Shipowners’ Association and the European Community Shipowners’ Association — have called for the international community to stop the escalation of tensions in the Strait of Hormuz.
    They also have called for the international community to fully respect international law.
    “All countries should ensure the safe passage of merchant vessels by respecting the freedom of navigation enshrined in Article 87(1)a and the right of innocent passage defined in Article 19 of the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea [UNCLOS],” the joint statement reads.

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Source: americanshipper.com

Iran says European fleet would be ‘provocative’

Persian Gulf/SoH

By AMIR HAVASI

Britain planning joint force to escort tankers through Strait of Hormuz after seizure of UK-flagged vessel

Iran on Sunday slammed as “provocative” a British proposal for a European-led naval mission to escort tankers in the Gulf, amid soaring tensions over the seizure of ships.

“We heard that they intend to send a European fleet to the Persian Gulf, which naturally carries a hostile message, is provocative and will increase tensions,” said government spokesman Ali Rabiei.

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Source: asiatimes.com