Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has conferred the ‘Fath’ (Victory) medal on commanders of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) naval forces for arresting US Marines who trespassed on Iran’s territorial waters.
In a Sunday meeting, Ayatollah Khamenei conferred the medal on Rear Admiral Ali Fadavi, commander of the IRGC Navy, and four other high-ranking commanders for arresting the trespassing US sailors.
Ayatollah Khamenei on January 24 commended as timely and praiseworthy the “brave” move by the IRGC naval forces, who arrested 10 US sailors after their patrol boats entered the country’s territorial waters on January 12.
The Leader stated that the praiseworthy measure by the IRGC forces stemmed from their faith and courage and was taken in the right time, adding that the capture of the US sailors “was in fact an act of God, who brought the Americans into our waters so they would be arrested with their hands on their heads through your timely measure.”
On January 13, the IRGC announced that ten US Marines, who had drifted into the country's territorial waters in the Persian Gulf and had been taken into Iranian custody, were released after Americans apologized for the incident.
Earlier the same day, Fadavi said two US Navy crafts carrying 10 Marines had reached three miles into the waters surrounding the Farsi Island in the Persian Gulf.
He added that the trespassing occurred because of technical problems with the navigation systems of the American vessels.