OTDIH 19 Oct 1987 US Navy attacked Iranian oil platforms during Operation Nimble Archer

An Iranian oil platform set ablaze after shelling by American destroyers during Operation Nimble Archer, 19 Oct 1987.

Iranian “fleet” to patrol international waters

Iran talks of numbered fleets like cheap hotels talk about how many rooms they have. If you start numbering from 26 or 27 then people might not realise how few ships you have.

The Islamic Republic of Iran Navy currently has 3 Alvand-class (Vosper Thornycroft Mk5) frigates, 3 Moudge-class (reverse-engineered Mk5) frigates, and 2 Bayandor-class (US PF-103) corvettes. From this they conjure a 27th Fleet.

It was also a nice touch by the Iranian media to claim the the Karg is a “helicopter carrier” instead of an Ol-class replenishment oiler. Bless ’em… they mean well.

Iran naval fleet to secure oil tankers in international waters

File photo shows Iran’s Kharg helicopter carrier.

Iran’s Navy Commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari says the Islamic Republic’s 27th naval fleet has been dispatched to international waters.

“The 27th naval fleet of the Navy has set sail for high seas in order to secure commercial vessels and oil tankers of the Islamic Republic of Iran,” Sayyari said in a Tuesday interview.

The naval fleet comprises the Sabalan destroyer and Kharg helicopter carrier warship, he said.

The Iranian commander noted that the new naval fleet was dispatched after the Navy’s 26th fleet –which comprised Bandar Abbas logistic warship and Alvand destroyer — ended its mission in the Gulf of Aden and returned to Iran on Monday.

The Navy’s 26th fleet was dispatched on June 2 to patrol waters in the north of the Indian Ocean and pass through the Bab-el-Mandeb Strait and the Red Sea.

The Iranian Navy also plans to dispatch its 28th fleet to the Atlantic, Pacific or South Indian oceans in the near future.

In recent years, Iran Navy has been increasing its presence in international waters to protect naval routes and provide security for merchant vessels and tankers.

In line with the international efforts to combat piracy, the Iranian Navy has also been conducting anti-piracy patrols in the Gulf of Aden since November 2008 to safeguard the vessels involved in maritime trade, especially the ships and oil tankers owned or leased by Iran.