TASS, July 11. Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) has denied reports that its boats attempted to intercept a British oil tanker in the Persian Gulf, the IRGC press service issue statement reads, published by the Fars News Agency on Thursday.
"The IRGC naval forces are carefully and thoroughly carrying out tasks in the Persian Gulf. In the last 24 hours there has been no clashes with foreign vessels, including British ships," the statement points out. At the same time, it is underlined that "if an order to seize a foreign vessel is given, the corps’ naval forces are capable of executing this task immediately."
On Wednesday, CNN reported that five armed boats, which could possibly belong to the IRGC, tried to intercept a British oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz. According to its data, the tanker was sailing out of the Persian Gulf when the boats approached it. The vessel’s crew was ordered to change course and stop in the nearby Iranian territorial waters. The UK's Royal Navy frigate HMS Montrose was following the tanker, according to CNN. Its crew insisted that the reportedly Iranian servicemen immediately back away, which they did.
On Thursday, Reuters news agency reported that the UK Ministry of Defense had confirmed that the Iranian boats tried to impede the British trade vessel in the Strait of Hormuz. However, according to the ministry, it was three boats involved in the incident and not five.