President Donald Trump announced on Friday that he will be speaking with officials from the United Kingdom about the recent seizure of a U.K. oil tanker by Iran.
“We’re going to be speaking with the U.K., and this only goes to show what I’m saying about Iran: trouble, nothing but trouble,” Trump told reporters at the White House on Friday.
Asked whether the actions by Iran would get a response out of the United States, Trump simply said, “Let’s see what happens.”
He then added, “But I know that it’s not an American ship, it’s U.K.”
The president also confirmed to reporters that Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) will be stepping in to try and help the relationship between the United States and Iran.
“Rand is a friend of mine. He asked if he could get involved. The answer is yes,” Trump said.
Iranian state media reported on Friday that Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) had seized the British-flagged Stena Impero as it was making its way through the Strait of Hormuz.
A public statement from the IRGC said the ship was seized for “failing to respect international maritime rules.”
There were also reports that Iran seized a ship flying the Lebanese flag.
U.K. Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said that he was attending an emergency meeting to “review what we know and what we can do to swiftly secure the release of the two vessels — a British-flagged vessel and a Liberian-flagged vessel.”
Hunt called the seizures “unacceptable” in a public statement.
He said, “Our ambassador in Tehran is in contact with the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs to resolve the situation and we are working closely with international partners. These seizures are unacceptable. It is essential that freedom of navigation is maintained and that all ships can move safely and freely in the region.”
The British company that owns Mesdar, the Liberian-flagged ship, confirmed that all crew are “safe and well.” The ship was reportedly allowed to move on after armed personnel boarded it.
“All crew are safe and well,” Norbulk Shipping UK said through a public statement.
These ship seizures are only the latest trouble involved with the Strait of Hormuz, a chokepoint where a fifth of the world’s oil travels through.
Trump announced this week that the amphibious assault ship USS Boxer had taken out an Iranian drone that had refused orders to stand down after it came within 1000 yards of the ship.
Iran denied the drone was shot down by the United States, but Trump confirmed the events on Friday.
“They shot down the drone,” he said.
President Trump added, “We have the greatest people in the world, we have the greatest equipment in the world, we have the greatest ships — the most deadly ships, we don’t want to have to use them, but they’re the most deadly ships ever conceived. And we hope for their sake they don’t do anything foolish. If they do, they will pay a price like nobody’s ever paid a price.”
From Bizpac Review