The US Navy and the British Royal Navy swiftly intervened after three Iranian fast-attack vessels, allegedly operated by Iran's Revolutionary Guard, approached a Greek Owned merchant vessel in the Strait of Hormuz.
The incident was captured by black-and-white images from a US Navy aircraft. The USS McFaul and the HMS Lancaster, guided-missile destroyer and frigate, respectively, were dispatched in response, with the Lancaster deploying a helicopter.
The situation de-escalated approximately an hour after the merchant ship confirmed that the fast-attack craft had left the scene. The vessel, identified as Centrofin's Marshall Islands-flag ultramax Venture, continued its transit through the strait without further issues.
While the motive for targeting the ship remains unclear, Iran typically focuses on tankers associated with owners or cargoes linked to its geopolitical conflicts with Western powers. In recent months, Iranian forces have seized three overseas tankers, including Advantage Tankers' Suezmax Advantage Sweet and Smart Tankers' VLCC Niovi, in response to the US seizure of Empire Navigation's tanker Suez Rajan. '
The Venture incident marks another concerning episode in the volatile Strait of Hormuz, a strategic waterway for global oil shipments.
Despite the incident, Iranian state media and the Revolutionary Guard have not yet acknowledged the event. The registered manager of the Venture, Trust Bulkers, and Centrofin have not responded to requests for comments. Ship-tracking data and visual evidence from the US Navy support the identification of the targeted vessel. As tensions persist in the region, international maritime operations and vessels traversing the Strait of Hormuz remain on high alert.