Friday, June 22, 2007
Royal Australian Navy personnel were almost captured by Iranian forces but repelled them using "highly colourful language", according to reports in the UK. Europe Correspondent Rafael Epstein reports, the incident happened a few months before 15 British sailors and marines were taken prisoner in the same Gulf waters. Several military sources have told the BBC that Iranian naval forces tried to capture an Australian Navy boarding team but were vigorously repelled. The BBC claims that the Australian Navy boarding party had just finished searching a vessel in the Gulf, when Iranian boats came out to meet them.The Australians reportedly saw the Iranian patrol approaching, reboarded the ship they had been searching, and aimed their weapons at the Iranian boats. The Australians used what was described as "highly colourful language" to deter the Iranian patrol It is not known if details of the incident were passed onto the British Navy before 15 of its personnel were captured in March. The British captives were eventually released after being paraded on TV, but caused huge controversy in the UK when two of them sold their stories to the media.