Iran deploys two warships to Gulf of Aden to escort commercial vessels
Iran's navy says it has deployed two warships to the Gulf of Aden, off Yemen's coast, aimed at providing security to the country's commercial shipping.
Iranian state TV said on Monday that the destroyer Sahand carries surface-to-surface missiles, air defence systems and torpedoes, while the Kharg has a helicopter pad and serves in a logistical role.
The chief of staff of Iran's army said the warships would "provide security for Islamic Republic vessels in international waters", Radio Farda reported.
Admiral Habibollah Sayari added that the warships would "escort" commercial vessels in the Sea of Oman and the Gulf of Aden.
The move comes amid a growing confrontation between Iran and the West. Iran still holds a British-flagged tanker seized in July the Persian Gulf after a supertanker carrying Iranian oil was detained off Gibraltar, a British overseas territory.
The Iranian ship was released earlier this month, and Iran said Monday that its oil has been sold to an unnamed buyer.
Agencies contributed to this report.