US Coast Guard rescues Iranian ship

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Wednesday, January 11, 2012

A photo of the Ya-Hassan.
Image: United States Navy.

A United States Coast Guard crew rescued six Iranian seamen from a ship in distress yesterday. The cargo ship Ya-Hassan was rescued about 50NM (92.6km) off the coast of Umm Qasr, Iraq. The ship's engine room had flooded. This is the second time within a week that a United States crew has rescued Iranian citizens.

According to the United States Navy, the Ya-Hassan signaled Coast Guard cutter Monomoy around 3 a.m. local time (0000 UTC) with signal flares and flashlights. Once rescued, the seamen were given water, blankets, and a meal prepared according to Islamic dietary laws. One of the crew members was treated onboard the Monomoy for minor injuries.

The rescued seamen were eventually given over to Iranian Coast Guard vessel Naji 7. The US Navy said the captain of the Naji 7 "thanks us for our cooperation."

On January 5, a US Navy vessel escorting the USS John C. Stennis rescued 13 Iranian sailors who were being held by pirates. The United States, by its own account, often rescues ships in foreign waters, but has been publicizing the rescue of Iranian ships because of increased tensions between the United States and Iran.