The Iranian warships are heading to St. Petersburg to participate in a naval parade hosted by Russia.

Defence specialist and open source intelligence expert @CovertShores is following the event closely, we recommend you follow him for more. He can be found on Twitter here.

The pair, the frigate IRINS Sahand and former oil-tanker-turned warship IRINS Makran report USNI here, sailed up the West coast of Africa and past Spain and France before approaching the southern coast of England.

“When Makran was first observed in November 2020, the ship was thought by western observers to be a forward base ship. This equated its role to that of the U.S. Navy’s Expeditionary Sea Base (ESB) ships, like the USS Hershel ‘Woody’ Williams (ESB-4). ESBs act as a floating base for operations and can carry or support a range of small boats and aircraft. Makran has exercised with launching unmanned air vehicles (UAVs) and mini submarines for special forces, implying an amphibious warfare role. Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corp Navy has two forward base ships, although both are much smaller than Makran.”

The two evssels were also pictured together in January.

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Goldilocks
Goldilocks
7 days ago

The nest article will read ‘Iranian Warship sinks in Channel’! (Also re those Sea Stallions the reverse-engineered copy of the Stallions that were abandoned by the Americans after Op Eagle Claw

Fedaykin
Fedaykin
1 day ago
Reply to  Goldilocks

Iran has never fully reverse engineered the RH-53D it is a pretty complex helicopter, they probably at best managed to reverse engineer some components or found alternatives. Of the five captured Eagle claw examples they were gutted for parts to keep the six RH-53D purchased during the Shah active. In more recent years they have apparently been able to restore one of the Eagle Claw examples to flight status using spares gained through sanctions busting. At best that is a sticking plaster solution and in the long term the remaining RH-53D they operate will wear out and retire. Irans domestic… Read more »

Karl
Karl
7 days ago

This is outrageous! How dare they!

Dave12
Dave12
6 days ago
Reply to  Karl

Well it’s not as if the royal navy fabricate warning shots and the RAF fabricating gun runs like the Russians did in the black sea on type 45.

Nick C
Nick C
7 days ago

The weather is good at the moment so I suggest that an Archer class is sent out, with a bunch of URNU trainees to take the photos. No need to disturb summer leave for the bigger ships. On the other had POW could be sent out to do a steam past?

Mark B
Mark B
7 days ago
Reply to  Nick C

I’m not sure I would bother sending anything out at all unless we have reason to believe they present a serious threat. Surely they are just trying to annoy us and personally I just am a little amused. Sometimes it is better to just ignore them.

spyintheskyuk
spyintheskyuk
6 days ago
Reply to  Mark B

I lost any interest after the Iranians called it a fleet frightening the daylights out of the US and Europe in the Atlantic. I guess it might inspire yet another new design for a Russian Carrier mind if it finally reaches St Petersburg without hitting a Danish Island.

Barry Larking
Barry Larking
6 days ago
Reply to  Mark B

I completely agree.

phil
phil
7 days ago

The camo scheme on those helicopters is awesome. Such a shame about the relationship as a shore visit at Culdrose or Yeovilton would have been a wonderful photo opportunity.

farouk
farouk
7 days ago
Reply to  phil

Phil wrote:
“”Such a shame about the relationship as a shore visit at Culdrose or Yeovilton would have been a wonderful photo opportunity.”2

The Mullahs in Tehran wouldn’t allow it, not due to any ambivalence towards the Uk, but because within hours the vast majority of the crews of both ships would have run off and claimed asylum. Of late we have seen a huge rise in the number of economic migrants sailing across the Channel in which to live it large over here. A very large percentage are….Iranian

Last edited 7 days ago by farouk
spyintheskyuk
spyintheskyuk
6 days ago
Reply to  farouk

Better send a border force cutter out then, actually maybe that one seen off of Sandwich during the Open can do the trick. Just be careful not to be kidnapped and used as bargaining chips. I suggest those Iranian Asylum Seekers had better give crossing the Channel a day or two off too now I think about it… or not depending upon your view of the matter I guess.

Mr Bell
Mr Bell
6 days ago
Reply to  spyintheskyuk

Kidnapped? Doubt it. They would risk having the SBS and SAS pay them a visit whilst conveniently positioned close to the uk shoreline.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
6 days ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

I assume they have to launch their ‘mini subs’ over the side in case they fancy damaging a few cables. Though as they call their corvette a stealth destroyer they probably think they could do it in broad daylight and no one will notice.

spyintheskyuk
spyintheskyuk
6 days ago
Reply to  phil

Yes that scheme is fantastic isn’t it… probably not great for the Channel on a normal day mind, so this might give them a false sense of security thinking this weather is typical up hear. Could have been interesting had it been foggy probably would have hit a P&O ferry despite their claimed state of the art radar.

Aethelstanthecurious
Aethelstanthecurious
7 days ago

I am totally intrigued by this and how the Iranians will spin this event or us for that matter. I think we should dispatch the Yorkshire Belle from Bridlington to monitor potential pollution.

Andy P
Andy P
7 days ago

Fair play, plenty RN/USN etc ships cutting around their neck of the woods and its open sea. I’m sure it will be spun as ‘stickin it to da man’ back home and nobody outside of sites like this will give a toss over here.

Aethelstanthecurious
Aethelstanthecurious
7 days ago
Reply to  Andy P

I’m sure you are right, still we enjoy the event for as long as the rules of the game are kept.

Andy P
Andy P
7 days ago

Unless of course they’re planning a sneak jihad on the Isle of Wight….  😱 

spyintheskyuk
spyintheskyuk
6 days ago
Reply to  Andy P

Well as I related earlier they have been for a month or so giving it big about how their ‘fleet’ is terrorising the unbelievers in the Atlantic showing that they aren’t safe anywhere. If only we had a wooden model to tow out and bomb as they sale by eh.

Xerxes
Xerxes
6 days ago
Reply to  Andy P

Jingoistic and ignorant comments aside, these boats are on their way back from Venezuela. there was a time when the RN of the ‘Imperial’ Iranian Navy shared many mutual port visits. One should respect their ability to independently build and put to sea boats that can transverse the oceans.

farouk
farouk
6 days ago
Reply to  Xerxes

X, I can see where you are coming from, but for the past 40 odd years the Iranians have been nothing but belligerent to the West. Especially the Uk. Now if they can go out of their way to burn the British flag, attack the British embassy (a number of times) Kidnap British citizens including a bunch of RN sailors, have their puppets build up a store of containing 1.5 tonnes of  explosives in London ban the BBC, fund militant pressure groups in the Uk (Islamic Human Rights Commission)  fund nutter MPs and basically bad mouth the Uk every chance… Read more »

Xerxes
Xerxes
6 days ago
Reply to  farouk

F, fair enough but as ever, there are two sides to every historical story. One is reminded of a 1953 MI6 backed coup that replaced a democratically elected prime minister by an poppet monarch. Alas, there is a lot of bad blood.

farouk
farouk
6 days ago
Reply to  Xerxes

Yes we keep hearing of the MI6 coup in 1953, but that was almost 70 years ago. The people who carried it out are long dead. The world has moved on and why are we judging the actions of yesteryear with the morals of today. But worse of all these historical events which pressure groups love to bash others (primarily the UK) never mention events in countries they come from or have links to for example when Israel was born in 1948, it was invaded by 7 Arab countries , when East Pakistan decided in 1971 it wanted to leave… Read more »

Xerxes
Xerxes
6 days ago
Reply to  farouk

“We are not makers of history. We are made by history.”

farouk
farouk
6 days ago
Reply to  Xerxes

X wrote: “We are not makers of history. We are made by history.” I never said we aren’t, what I did say was pressure groups politicise certain historical events in which to promote their cause whilst overlooking other events so for example whilst the woke generation love to shout out “The British carried out slavery” they not only fail to mention that actually the British lead the way in pushing the first world to abandon slavery by the use of military strong-arming, they omit that actually slavery not only existed before the Uk became a dominant world power all over… Read more »

Last edited 6 days ago by farouk
Andy P
Andy P
6 days ago
Reply to  Xerxes

Jingoistic and ignorant comments aside”… huh ! I was going for humour too. I assume you’re referring to the “sneak jihad” comment rather than my earlier post which probably didn’t fit your narrative.

I guess if you go looking for things to take offence at then you’ll find them.

Xerxes
Xerxes
6 days ago
Reply to  Andy P

Andy, no offence. My comment was not directed at your post which actually got a ‘like’ from me. As for attempt at humour, there is always a fine line between humour and a dog whistle.

Andy P
Andy P
6 days ago
Reply to  Xerxes

No worries Xerxes, you did quote me though so you can understand my confusion.

As for the humour/dog whistle stuff…. sometimes you need to know people or in this instance maybe hang around a site to get a vibe although I accept that its very easy for people to ‘go a little peculiar’ quite quickly, there’s not many consequences to an online rant as opposed to talking about it face to face.

Xerxes
Xerxes
6 days ago
Reply to  Andy P

Well said Andy P.

Airborne
Airborne
6 days ago
Reply to  Xerxes

Not really as their kit is mostly reverse engineered 80s crap.

Xerxes
Xerxes
6 days ago
Reply to  Airborne

You’ve got to start somewhere!

Sonik
Sonik
7 days ago

Lol what will they think of next

Tommo
Tommo
7 days ago

Before the Revolution of 79 ,we trained their Naval Officers, one of their officers boasted that the Iranian Navy would be unbeatable. My boss replied that we would fight at night in rough weather . Silence prevailed

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
7 days ago

And why not. Hope they make it safely.

Tommo
Tommo
7 days ago

Bognor Butlins, launches pedalos to intercept and match their speed

David
David
7 days ago

FONOPs in action. Safe journey, however, given what was said a out the tanker having an Int role, I hope she is monitored crossing the sub-surface comms lines – the Russians would love to tap those lines.

Tommo
Tommo
7 days ago
Reply to  David

Does the Navy still conduct MCM operation Pike which checks around the UK waters going over area’s annually to see whether foreign objects have been laid in sensitive places such as Sub comms cables?

David Barry
David Barry
7 days ago
Reply to  Tommo

@Gunbuster is someone who can answer that. Not this c/s sorry.

Tommo
Tommo
6 days ago
Reply to  David Barry

Thanks

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
6 days ago
Reply to  Tommo

MCMVs still carry out route surveys.

Tommo
Tommo
6 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Many thanks when we use to go along the East Coast up to the top of Scotland when surveying areas of interest, most new objects found were associated with the Oil/gas industry just jettisoned overboard ,but all had to be investigated either by eca104 (paps) or feely touchy by the divers very time consuming

farouk
farouk
6 days ago

I’ve been following this story since both ships set sail in May , until Jan this year the IRINS Makran was a huge Oil Tanker named the Persian Gulf which the Iranians spent between 4 to 8 million dollars converting into a military vessel sometime between Sept 2020 and the 8th Dec 2020 For their money they build a huge landing pad at the front (which appears to have to use the ships cranes to deliver stores onto the pad. There is no hanger for any aircraft. It has been fitted out with 20 mm and twin 23 mm anti-aircraft guns… Read more »

210603151957-03-iranian-ship-satellite-may-exlarge-169.jpg
farouk
farouk
6 days ago
Reply to  farouk

The accompanying warship to the above is the IRINS Sahand a Moudge-class frigate (4 built so far) which are based on the Alvand Class (Vosper Mk 5) light patrol frigates. Which the Uk sold Iran at the back end of the 1960s. In typical Iranian mullah bluster  the mullahs claim that the class is a stealth war ship (Mrs Miggins our cat in the ID picture is much more stealthier)   The ship is named after the one the Yanks sank in 1988. Its sister ship the IRIS Damavand which joined the Iranian navy in 2015 sank in 2018 when it hit… Read more »

spyintheskyuk
spyintheskyuk
6 days ago
Reply to  farouk

You are right, I have never noticed the cat before in your ID pic. Indeed even after reading the above I had to check it 3 times before I realised it wasn’t Batman.

farouk
farouk
6 days ago
Reply to  farouk

Ah, just noticed that i entered the wrong month when both ships passed the cape, it was June and not May

spyintheskyuk
spyintheskyuk
6 days ago
Reply to  farouk

yes I was really impressed for a moment when they claimed they had built this ship inside 6 months or so ‘shocking Western experts’. Then I discovered the truth about a lump of iron being stuck on the deck and became somewhat less impressed.

AlexS
AlexS
6 days ago

What are you waiting for to harass them like they do in the Gulf to others? 🙂

spyintheskyuk
spyintheskyuk
6 days ago
Reply to  AlexS

I do wonder if a drone was sent near by whether they would attempt to shoot it down.

farouk
farouk
6 days ago
Reply to  spyintheskyuk

Spy,
The Iranians love to wind the yanks up by flying small UAVs near (and in one case over a carrier) and then boasting to the media and the rest of the world the US is powerless against the might of the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. Well the US has just fitted an Optical Dazzling Interdictor, or ODIN, to the USS Stockdale (DDG 106) Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer designed to take down those pesky drone the Iranians like to field,
https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/41525/heres-our-best-look-yet-at-the-navys-new-laser-dazzler-system

ODIN-USS-Stockdale-Laser-Weapon-1.jpg
Airborne
Airborne
5 days ago
Reply to  AlexS

What are “you” waiting for? Mmmmmmm I see a none UK commentator, who may want others to think otherwise.

AlexS
AlexS
5 days ago
Reply to  Airborne

Uh? i see you are also very upset with criticism of embarrasing T45 destroyers…
But where i implied i was a UK commentator? and i still make English language mistakes often.
That said i probably know more about RN WW2 history than you…

Airborne
Airborne
5 days ago
Reply to  AlexS

Continues negative comments, nothing constructive or debatable, typical troll behaviour. Glad you are so smart about RN history, do try to show it as you hide it very well.

Mr Bell
Mr Bell
6 days ago

We do need to shadow and watch these vessels. That tanjer is a bloody big ship and could be holding a whole load of nasty surprises.
A type 23 would suffice.

Bob
Bob
6 days ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

More humorous would be an RNLI lifeboat.

Tommo
Tommo
6 days ago
Reply to  Bob

A Butlins Pedalo launched from Bognor Beach has probably a better radar cross-section for stealthy approaches very hard to track carbon composites radar absorbent .But seriously could the fwd hold of the Makran be containing the Revolutionary guards favourite Calm water vessel the fast attack Boghammer speedboat used extensively during the Iran/Iraq war mainly for suicide attacks nasty piece of equipment in dedicated believer’s

dan
dan
6 days ago

And which country is providing the refueling for this ship(s)?

AlexS
AlexS
6 days ago
Reply to  dan

A tanker that size has enough fuel.

James
James
6 days ago

I’m not sure what the fuss is they are passing through legally like any navy . Calm down people. Making silly jokes against the Iranian navy may be easy, but Iran can hit any UK base in the middle East with ease ! So don’t underestimate the Ayotollahs in Tehran who hit US bases in Iraq as retaliation, the US shied away from hitting back despite macho Trump in charge and turn to full scale war. Iran is not some push over. They are showing flag not to intimidate the Royal navy but rather to remind Britain they are relevant… Read more »

Last edited 6 days ago by James
Tommo
Tommo
6 days ago
Reply to  James

The best approach for their legal maritime transit through the Channel and correct transit corridor through the Dover straits is to applaud them for their seamanship abilities if they make it there’s a he’ll of a lot cross channel traffic

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
6 days ago
Reply to  James

Yes, and most of them missed and hit desert!

Other than that agree, let them get on with it they’re only off to St P for a jolly.

Trevor Holcroft
Trevor Holcroft
6 days ago

Optimists in Wikipedia claims it’s 2000 to 2500 tonnes.

Elsewhere it’s said to be 1300.

In reading, it had been suggested that they were going to Venezuela to drop off weapons. But the sister ship (?) Kharg, which was due to go to Russia, mysteriously caught fire and sank. So possibly they have been diverted.
They have been in transit via the Cape of Good Hope, not the Med.

Last edited 6 days ago by Trevor Holcroft
criss whicker
criss whicker
6 days ago

to be honest with you, i would not even send the royal navy out to observe them,
im sure we can observe from shore if required, after all, do they not expect us to follow them just to show back home how dangerous they are, and the royal navy has to be wary of them,,, just by not turning up at all may well confuse them and they may well be put on edge,
just a thought, chaps, just a thought.lol

Bringer of Facts
Bringer of Facts
6 days ago

We should behave the same way as they behave towards our ships when transiting the Gulf. Send lots of small fast craft to harass them.

criss whicker
criss whicker
5 days ago

A very good point, and probably well justified.

Barry O’Connell
Barry O’Connell
5 days ago

Pity we don’t have those pleasure boats that once took people for a trip around the bay, why? The MOD could say look here is a back hander, rustle up a few locals for trip to see this Iran warship, if the MOD paid about ten or fifteen pleasure craft, it would remind the crew , of what it is like for our ships to have their speedboats flying around ours, plus get a few girls to be dolly birds giving Iran Jack flashes of what your missing, as we used to get. Maybe get a old Jack Vet to… Read more »

Wayne F
Wayne F
5 days ago

21.5 metres draft, it best watch where it sails through the Dover Straight, and avoid cutting corners, otherwise we’d have to rescue them.

Johan
Johan
2 days ago

delivering Rubber dinghies and paddles to French Beaches, considering there moving international waters. bit of a stretch

Frank Morcom
Frank Morcom
2 hours ago

Didn’t we convert container ships during the Falklands War like the Makran. The name Atlantic Conveyor strikes a cord.