10 U.S. Navy Sailors Held in Iran: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

The US Department of the Navy logo hangs on the wall at the Pentagon. (Getty)

The US Department of the Navy logo hangs on the wall at the Pentagon. (Getty)

Two small U.S. Navy vessels and 10 sailors are in Iranian custody after being picked up in the Persian Gulf, CNN reports.

The two boats were headed from Kuwait to Bahrain, officials say. The Pentagon says they have received “assurances” from Iranian officials.

“We have been in contact with Iran and have received assurances that the crew and the vessels will be returned promptly,” spokesman Peter Cook told the Associated Press.

An official told CNN it does not appear to be a “hostile act.”

The sailors are not expected to be released until Wednesday morning in Iran, when it is daylight.

Here’s what you need to know:


1. One of the Vessels Apparently Had a Mechanical Issue

The Pentagon believes one of the vessels had a mechanical issue near Farsi Island and ran aground, the Associated Press reports.

“We’re aware. We’re working on it and we hope to resolve the situation,” Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes told CNN.

“Certainly, everybody should be aware of the fact we have been in touch with the Iranians and they have assured us that our sailors are safe and that they’ll be allowed to continue their journey promptly,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest told CNN.


2. The Sailors Are Being Held By the Revolutionary Guards, Iranian Media Reports

The sailors are being held by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, Iranian media, the Fars News Agency, is claiming.

According to the Fars report, the Revolutionary Guards “arrested” nine men and one woman.

The Revolutionary Guards Navy held 15 British Navy personnel for 13 days in April 2007, the BBC reported at the time.


3. Secretary of State John Kerry Has Reached Out to Iran’s Foreign Minister

From left, EU's foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, Deputy director of the Department for Nonproliferation and Arms Control of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia Alexey Karpov, British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond and US Secretary of State John Kerry attend the announcement of an agreement on Iran nuclear talks on April 2, 2015 at the The Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology. (Getty)

From left, EU’s foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, Deputy director of the Department for Nonproliferation and Arms Control of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia Alexey Karpov, British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond and US Secretary of State John Kerry attend the announcement of an agreement on Iran nuclear talks on April 2, 2015 at the The Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology. (Getty)

Secretary of State John Kerry has reached out to Iran’s foreign minister, Mohammed Javad Zarif, who he has been dealing with for several years during nuclear negotiations, the Associated Press reports.

Kerry has recently said the implementation of the nuclear deal is “days away,” which would suspend oil, trade and financial sanctions against Iran. The hardline Revolutionary Guards opposes the nuclear deal.

Officials learned about the situation at about 12:30 p.m. Eastern.

The situation in the Persian Gulf comes just hours before President Obama is set to deliver the State of the Union Address.


4. Iranian Media Says the Vessels Had Guns & Were ‘Snooping Around’ in Iranian Waters

The Fars News agency says the two U.S. Navy vessels were armed with 50 caliber guns and were “snooping around” in Iranian waters, according to the New York Times.

The news agency says GPS equipment was confiscated.


5. The U.S. Navy Released Video Showing an Iranian Vessel Firing a Missile Near an American Aircraft Carrier

There have been issues recently involving U.S. ships and the Iranian navy in the Persian Gulf.

The U.S. Navy recently released video that it says shows Iranian Revolutionary Guards vessel firing unguided rockets on December 26 near warships, including the aircraft carrier the USS Harry S Truman in the Strait of Hormuz.

American officials called it “highly provocative, unsafe and unprofessional.”

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Anonymous

Obama is weak and has tied the hands of the US military. Obama gives a speech to America tonight, while US navy sailors are imprisoned by the Muslims in Iran. God help America!

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