A US-Iran confrontation in the Persian Gulf last month occurred due to the US Navy’s “unauthorized” presence during Iran's planned military drills.
Responding to US accusations that the IRGC fleet provoked the confrontation by acting in a “harassing” manner towards US ships, IRGC naval commander Alireza Tangsiri said that “the Persian Gulf region is our home and we are not looking for a fire in our house.”
Tangsiri told local media that the US forces were an “illegitimate presence” at the planned military maneuvers, “so they were ordered to leave.”
Iran had already communicated to military and commercial shipping regarding its impending exercise and to stay away from its area of operations, he said.
The US has said it maintains a naval presence in the region to carry out patrols of crucial shipping routes, and claimed that the recent encounter was sparked by Iran, whose speedboats buzzed the US Navy ships in a “dangerous and provocative” manner.
Last week the Chinese Navy accused a US Navy ship of “trespassing” in waters where its ships were conducting an exercise. The US ship was chased away by naval and air assets.
US naval presence in the Persian Gulf and the South China Sea is seen as an act of warmongering by Iran and China while the US says it is on patrolling and freedom of navigation missions.