HMS Montrose was forced to fire flares on more than a dozen occasions as she warned off the Iranian forces, say the Royal Navy.

The Royal Navy say that British ships have been probed by the Iranians daily with 115 interactions in all.

“Montrose passed through the narrow gateway to the Gulf 38 times – each time observed by Iranian forces, broadcasting on radios, with drones watching every move overhead and boats often approaching with intent.

The Plymouth-based frigate, which completed the first phase of its escort duties late last week, was forced to fire flares on more than a dozen occasions as she warned off the Iranian forces.”

Despite such threats however, the ship has reportedly sought to prevent a tense situation escalating and so far the only thing fired have been warning flares as they drove away Iranian boats.

Commander Will King said:

“The threat is there. And as long as it is, Royal Navy warships will be here to protect British shipping.”

“It’s a big ‘well done’ to HMS Duncan and HMS Montrose especially,” said Commodore Dean Bassett, UK Maritime Component Commander – the senior Royal Navy officer in the Middle East.

“Both have worked tirelessly, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, in extremely hot and humid conditions, facing a high degree of threat, making sure British merchant shipping is safe. That they have done so is down to the quality of our men and women.

The impact on the UK – and the world’s economy – if these six million tonnes had not got through doesn’t need underlining: about one third of the world’s natural gas and one sixth of the world’s oil pass through Hormuz.

Our response is a direct result to the threat from Iran. If Iran sticks to international law and stops it aggressive action, there is no need for warships to be here in force.”

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maurice10
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maurice10

Currently, with a crippled Westminster are our forces are in a more vulnerable position, than they would be, by a functioning parliament?

Steve R
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Steve R

I don’t think it makes a difference really.

Russjm
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Russjm

The last time Boris got involved in Iran he seemed to be working for the Iranians. As an Iranian American journo put it -“ it’s an unusual strategy when neither side knows which side your on “

Herodotus
Guest

That’s easy, he’s on Boris’ side

Ian
Guest
Ian

I have a feeling that the rules of engagement will be in self defence of RN assets only. It’s going to get more interesting as Iranian forces continue to press and prod, with the possible taking of another vessel being a major scalp for Iran and great embarrassment for the U.K.
I can’t see any way where our forces can respond to a high-jacking once the ‘lone’ Type 45/23 has been painted with land based weapons radar.

julian1
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julian1

aren’t we supposed to be working is concert with the US Navy now? If that is the case, then I think there’ll be a few more and more powerful assets watching our back

Gunbuster
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Gunbuster

And the Aussies and the Bahrain Forces

farouk
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farouk

The problem we have is after years of political correctness, a lot of our MPs only see our armed forces as instruments of evil. To them countries like Iran are the real victims must be given the benefit of the doubt. Take for example that oil tanker taken off Gib. it was released on the understanding that it wouldn’t go to Syria. Its current position (Just checked) is just off the coast of Syria. Meanwhile all the ethical latte drinkers promote the POV that the Uk/US and Israel are the real war mongers. Mindsets like that can only result in… Read more »

Herodotus
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Farouk…that really isn’t the position of most liberal minded politicians. I agree, that these sorts of issues can be very frustrating in the short term…but, we have a way of redressing issues. I have spent many years of my life in the middle-east, too many, and whilst our present currency is low (and everyone on this website must know why)….our reputation is enduring. Perfidious Albion is still a factor in the Middle-East!

Ulya
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Ulya

Herodotus, may I ask the reason for your many years in the ME?

Herodotus
Guest

Quite large numbers of Brits work in the Gulf States in all sectors of economic/military activity. I would, quite regularly, bump into people I knew from my home town in airports in the region. My particular work varied a great deal, however it centred on electronic navigation and sonar for the oil industry and, at times, the military.

Ulya
Guest
Ulya

Thank you Herodotus, I was just curious. I meet many Brits and Kiwis when based in Abu Dhabi a few years ago. I take from your original comment you did not always enjoy your time

Herodotus
Guest

Long spells abroad do not improve relationships…I’ll leave it there!

HF
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HF

I very much doubt that many mps will side with a theocracy which brutally murders people for being gay and locks up British citizens on trumped up charges for political reasons.

jon Agar
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jon Agar

Do you not think if it got painted with a radar signal they would not defend themselves. like all things Iranian they wont want to lose face to the Infidel, they teach it at school, but still the flock to the UK, they just think with 3 warships patrolling on there doorstep. we have left the English Channel wide open to the Dingy day trippers

Ian
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Ian

But they have been painted Jon. ROE attack, probably starts at the actual loosing of missiles, once Iran prods enough to find such a state exists, they’ll probably exploit it for domestic/regional political gain.

This possibility must exist?

HF
Guest
HF

Deleted by me.

dave12
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dave12

Any news on the british tanker Iran still has?

farouk
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farouk

The craft was apprantly detained due to Tehran stating the ship had done a hit and run. But where Iran really is messing up is with the crew who are mostly indian and whom they still hold. The thing is Iran sells oil to India and in keeping hold of the crew who are not British, they risk alienating a vital sourse of revenue from a non western nation from the 21st Aug: On August 20, Erik Hanell, CEO of Stena Bulk met with the Iranian Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif in Stockholm and was able to promote the case… Read more »

Lusty
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Lusty

Seven of the crew to be released, apparently.

dan
Guest
dan

At the very least they should shoot down or use ECM to take down those drones flying overhead. The Captain of the ship has no idea what those drones r up to. They could be capable of suicide attacks. Firing just a few flares won’t do much.

Robert blay
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Robert blay

The captain and his team will have all the intelligent he needs to make the correct decisions.

the_marquis
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the_marquis

Can a drone commit a suicide attack?

DaveyB
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DaveyB

Yes, the person controlling it just flies it into the target. Its debatable how much damage a reconnaissance drone would do to a ship. As it won’t contain a dedicated warhead, but instead would be reliant on the remaining fuel and aircraft’s mass to do the damage.

the_marquis
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the_marquis

Yeah I was just questioning whether inanimate objects can commit suicide, unless of course Iranian artificial intelligence is so advanced that their drones have not only become self-aware, but have also been radicalised by the Ayotollah to the extent they are willing to sacrifice their robotic existence for the glory of the Islamic Republic!

Presumably a large, slow moving recce drone shouldn’t be a problem for Sea Wolf??

DaveyB
Guest
DaveyB

Slow moving drones shouldn’t be a problem for Aster, SeaCeptor or Sea Wolf. The DS30, miniguns and GPMG should also be capable of bringing one down.

jon Agar
Guest
jon Agar

STOP FIRING FLARES, use something with a bit of bite and they will scurry off back Iran..quicker the Uber eats scooter

Herodotus
Guest

I agree, flares are so 1970s!

Ian
Guest
Ian

Quite a bit of hull bashing and line cutting in the Icelandic fishing dispute!
Not that the Strait of Hormuz and the Iranian threat compares in any way.

Russjm
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Russjm

and to date, as I understand it, not one of our so called “ allies” has lifted a finger in support

farouk
Guest
farouk

Thats because Tehran has dangerled the carrot of huge rewards (Trade deals) if the EU countries turn away from washington and side with the mad mullahs France today has just decleared a $15 Billion credit deal Germany is Irans biggest EU partner (Currently building a Hig speed line) and is dragging its feet simply to show Iran it doesn’t support the US and so hopes it will jump to the front of the queue when things turn out for the betetr. The strange thing is Russia and China which you would think would be cashing in with the slow down… Read more »

Joe16
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Joe16

Technically, we’re also a part of those economic deals to encourage Iran to turn away from nuclear weapons, last time I checked. Which is why it frustrates me so much more that Iran spits in our collective faces by running oil into Syria despite EU sanctions and illegally takes British shipping passing through internaitonal shipping lanes.
No other country is actively providing protection to British shipping through the Strait, it’s not just Euro countries. Besides, we all know the condition of the German Navy, they for sure don’t have the resources for that.

Joe16
Guest
Joe16

Which “allies” are you referring to? The US is also not escorting British tankers through the Strait, neither are Australian, Canadian or NZ vessels. I don’t blame them, we now have the vessels in position to do it ourselves.

Cam
Guest
Cam

Flares!! Why not just stick the middle finger up next time.

Gunbuster
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Gunbuster

The ROE are formulated in accordance with the guidance contained in JSP 383 which is available here is you want a read. https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/27874/JSP3832004Edition.pdf Flares are one of a series of steps that happen during ANY, and I will say that again , ANY situation where you need to rachet up a response not just in the Gulf but in other areas to. Check out the responses to Spanish incursions off GIb… Flares have been used there… You usually start with radio calls that get sterner as distance decreases, LRAD calls are made in multiple languages, flashing searchlights, sounding the Siren… Read more »

Ian
Guest
Ian

Are there enough assets to protect vessels within a response time radius.
All pretty much useless if Iranian Guard board and steer vessel north.
Around the strait, tens of minutes would see them in Iranian waters.

DaveyB
Guest
DaveyB

We also used flares as a warning when conducting vehicle patrols. If a car was speeding towards your front or rear one person would aim at it, preferably with a GPMG and another would fire a series mini flares at it. If after the third “ignoring” a burst was fired into the engine block. The reason for this approach was due to suicide bombers using vehicles. You only get a couple of seconds to decide whether its a threat or not. Hence why one person was always covering the vehicle whilst the other delivered the warning. Whenever we did meet… Read more »

Russjm
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Russjm

@Joe16, firstly my apologies, I can’t find your post but in answer to your question. The “ do called allies” I was referred to was obviously the gulf states like the UAE, Bahrain, Saudi and to a slightly lesser extent Oman.

Gunbuster
Guest
Gunbuster

Bahrain joined the Brits Yanks and Aussies 2 weeks ago. It was the first GCC state to do so.