Iran Thanks U.S. Navy for Freeing Fishermen from Pirates

The guided-missile destroyer USS Kidd (DDG 100) responded to a distress call from the master of the Iranian-flagged fishing dhow Al Molai, who stated he was held captive by pirates. Kidd's visit, board, search and seizure team, detained 15 suspected pirates, who were reportedly holding the 13-member Iranian crew hostage for several weeks. Kidd is conducting counter-piracy and maritime security operations while deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility. (U.S. Navy photo/Released)

The Iranian government has officially thanked the United States for the USS Kidd rescuing an Iranian fishing boat and 13 Iranians who had been seized and held captive by pirates more than 40 days ago.

The Christian Science Monitor reports:

The Iranian foreign ministry thanked the United States for rescuing its sailors, but Iranian news outlets linked to the Revolutionary Guard called the move a publicity stunt.

You can read the full article HERE.

The search-and-seizure team from the USS Kidd gave the Iranian mariners food, water, and medical care.  The pirates were taken into custody by the USS Kidd boarding party until Friday morning, when they were transferred to the USS John Stennis “where the matter will be reviewed for prosecution,” according to a statement.

In the meantime, the U.S. Navy has released photographs of the rescue.

ARABIAN SEA (Jan. 6, 2012) A Sailor assigned to the guided-missile destroyer USS Kidd’s (DDG 100) visit, board, search and seizure team greets a crew member of the Iranian-flagged fishing dhow Al Molai. Kidd's visit, board, search and seizure team detained 15 suspected pirates, who were holding a 13-member Iranian crew hostage for several weeks, according to the members of the crew. Kidd is conducting counter-piracy and maritime security operations while deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility. (U.S. Navy photo/Released)

And here’s a 17 second video of photographed from one of the helicopters on the rescue mission.

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