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US failed to prevent Iranian Navy flotilla from crossing Panama Canal: Navy cmdr.

The US failed to prevent Iranian Navy flotilla from crossing Panama Canal.

The United States once failed to prevent the Iranian Navy’s 86th flotilla of warships from sailing through the Panama Canal, Navy Commander Rear Admiral Shahram Irani recounts, as the flotilla docks at Oman’s Salalah port.

Irani said that “global arrogance” tried to block the flotilla’s mission through threats and sanctions, but it did not succeed.

“The [US] sanction was no more than a rant based on international law. They could not even prevent the flotilla from sailing into the Panama Canal ... This was another slap on the face of the Great Satan,” he told Fars news agency on Saturday.

For the first time in Iran’s naval history, the 86th flotilla, comprised of Dena and Makran warships, undertook a long voyage around the world and sailed in the Indian, Pacific and Atlantic Oceans without relying on aid from shores.

It set sail from Iran’s southern port city of Bandar Abbas on the Persian Gulf on September 20, 2022. Now, on the 236th day of its voyage, the flotilla docked at Oman’s Salalah port as its last stop.

The flotilla traveled some 63,000 kilometers and crossed the equator four times. It will reach Bandar Abbas by traveling an additional 2,000 kilometers.

On February 3, 2023, the US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) identified Dena and Makran warships as Iranian property for sanctions related to a wider effort to target the country’s drone industry.

'France unaware of own rules, disturbed Iranian vessels'

Elsewhere in his interview, the Navy commander said France claimed that the Iranian warships had entered its waters.

However, he added, the French became speechless when the flotilla reminded them of their own shipping rules.

“The French have some islands in the Pacific Ocean. Unfortunately, they were not aware of their own regulations and caused disturbances for us, to which we responded with the language of the law,” he explained.

“The recent incident was a big blow to the French in the field of international shipping, and they never talked about it.”

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