An Iranian rocket passed within 1,500 yards of a U.S. aircraft carrier in the Strait of Hormuz last week, a senior defense official confirmed Tuesday to Fox News.
An Iranian attack craft launched the rocket near the USS Harry S. Truman Saturday as part of a previously unannounced live-fire exercise. The incident was first reported by NBC News.
Officials said the rockets traveled in a direction away from the Truman and other maritime traffic in the strait, which conncts the Persian Gulf to the Arabian Sea. However, one official told NBC the Iranian action was “unnecessarily provocative and unsafe.”
In addition to the Truman, a French frigate and the destroyer USS Buckley were also in the area, as was commercial traffic in keeping with the strait’s status as an international recognized shipping route.
A U.S. military official told The Hill newspaper that several Iranian naval vessels approached the Truman and other vessels Saturday morning. At around 10:45 a.m., the Iranian convoy announced it was setting the live-fire exercise in motion and requested nearby vessels to keep clear.
Approximately 40 minutes later, the Iranians repeated the warning and the rockets were launched. It was not immediately clear how many rockets were fired. The Hill reported the ships departed the area after the launches.
The Truman arrived in the Persian Gulf recently to provide a launching point for airstrikes against the ISIS terror group in Iraq and Syria. It is replacing the USS Theodore Roosevelt, which departed the Middle East this past October. The French aircraft carrier Charles De Gaulle is also in the Gulf to perform similar function.