U.S. Navy to Fire on Vessels Breaching Iraqi Terminal Buffer Zone
Vessels must contact coalition authorities before sailing within 3 miles of the Basrah or Khor Al Amara oil terminals or face deadly force, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command said in a statement.
?Suspect vessels won?t be boarded, but may be fired at if they don?t contact coalition warships,? said Lt. Commander Lisa Brackenbury, spokesperson for the U.S. Fifth Fleet. ?The coalition will fire flares at suspect vessels that haven?t made contact and ultimately sink them.?
Before firing on any vessel, the coalition states that they will attempt to contact them via radio, loudspeakers, flashing lights and other means, the statement said.
Only oil tankers and support vessels, such as tug boats authorized by terminal operators and coalition forces, are allowed to enter the warning zone.