US officials monitoring two Iranian navy ships that may be headed to Venezuela: report

US officials monitoring two Iranian navy ships that may be headed to Venezuela: report
This photo released on Jan 12, 2021 by the Iranian Army shows the Iranian-made warship Makran before it joins the Navy, in Iran. (Iranian army via AP)
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Updated 30 May 2021

US officials monitoring two Iranian navy ships that may be headed to Venezuela: report

US officials monitoring two Iranian navy ships that may be headed to Venezuela: report

DUBAI: US national security officials are reportedly monitoring two Iranian ships which are believed to be headed to Venezuela, an American political newspaper cited three people familiar with the matter as saying. 
The Politico said “an Iranian frigate and the Makran, a former oil tanker that was converted to a floating forward staging base, have been heading south along the east coast of Africa,” quoting the people who spoke on condition of anonymity.  
The newspaper said the move could be perceived as “provocative” amid tense US-Iranian relations. 
The sources said the American officials were not sure of the destination of the Iranian naval vessels, but they believe “they may be ultimately headed for Venezuela.”
The intentions of why Iran is “sending the vessels in the Western Hemisphere remains a mystery, as does their cargo,” the sources added. 
The Politico said it contacted the spokespersons for the Venezuelan Foreign Ministry, the Iranian Mission to the UN, and White House and Pentagon spokespersons. All of them, however, have declined to comment on the matter. 
Previously, Iranian media has boasted about the 755-foot long Makran capabilities, saying it can serve as a platform for electronic warfare and special operations missions. The ship has the ability to carry “six to seven helicopters, as well as drones,” Iranian media said.