According to the US Navy, its nuclear-powered guided-missile carrying submarine USS Georgia on Monday crossed the Strait of Hormuz Monday accompanied by two additional American warships.
“The nuclear-power Ohio-class guided-missile submarine USS Georgia (SSGN 729), along with the guided-missile cruisers USS Port Royal (CG 73) and USS Philippine Sea (CG 58), transited the Strait of Hormuz entering the Arabian Gulf, Dec. 21,” the Navy announced, using the Arab name for the Persian Gulf.
The Navy also noted that the Georgia is able “to carry up to 154 Tomahawk land-attack cruise missiles,” and “the platform can also be configured to host up to 66 Special Operations Forces.”
The three war vessels are sailing up the Gulf and alongside the Iranian coast on the day after Iran loyalist militias had struck the US embassy in Baghdad with at least eight Katyusah rockets (8 Katyusha Rockets Hit US Embassy in Baghdad, Pompeo Blames Iran), a few weeks ahead of the first anniversary of the killing of Iranian general Qassem Soleimani.
The US Navy stated: “Georgia’s presence in the US 5th Fleet area of operations (AOO) demonstrates the US Navy’s ability to sail and operate wherever international law allows.”
The navy message said that the 5th Fleet’s AOO encompasses “about 2.5 million square miles of water area and includes the Arabian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, Red Sea and parts of the Indian Ocean.”
“As an inherently flexible maneuver force, capable of supporting routine and contingency operations, Georgia’s presence demonstrates the United States’ commitment to regional partners and maritime security with a full spectrum of capabilities to remain ready to defend against any threat at any time,” the US Navy said.
Iran’s Mehr News agency commented that “the United States as usual says that the move aims at ensuring maritime security of the Strait of Hormuz and the Persian Gulf,” adding: “The US has adopted similar measures in the past which eventually proved to be ineffective.”
JUST IN: #USNavy‘s #USSGeorgia transits #StraitofHormuz with cruisers #USSPortRoyal and #USSPhilippineSea. Georgia’s presence in @US5thFleet demonstrates the fleet’s ability to operate wherever international law allows. #forcetobereckonedwith
DETAILS ➡️ https://t.co/PObIHE2XC6 pic.twitter.com/ys8cBbnm7k
— U.S. Navy (@USNavy) December 21, 2020