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Hormuz – ‘hot strait’ in US-Iran tensions

Hormuz - 'hot strait' in US-Iran tensions 0

Hormuz – ‘hot strait’ in US-Iran tensions

Strategic strait at the heart of US-Iran tensions

Iranian warships patrol the Strait of Hormuz.

Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) on June 20 shot down a US reconnaissance drone (UAV) that was accused of violating the country’s airspace.

Over the past 40 years, Iran has always understood that it does not have the ability to directly confront America’s powerful military force.

The Strait of Hormuz, located between the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman, is an important component of Iran’s strategy to deal with the United States.

The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) calls Hormuz `the world’s worst throat`, rating it more important than the Strait of Malacca in Southeast Asia and the Suez Canal in Egypt.

Because the global economy still depends mainly on oil supply, Iran’s blockade of the Strait of Hormuz, even for a short period of time, could significantly increase world oil prices and at the same time slow down the global economy.

Hormuz - 'hot strait' in US-Iran tensions

Location of the Strait of Hormuz.

The narrowest point of the Strait of Hormuz is only 34 km wide, and the sea transport route through here is only 3 km wide in both directions.

During the Iran-Iraq War (1980-1988), both sides sought to blockade each other by targeting civilian shipping routes, causing many cargo ships to be sunk or severely damaged.

Most countries in the world supported Iraq in this war.

Consecutive attacks targeting oil vessels in the Gulf of Oman and the Persian Gulf in the past month have raised concerns that the US-Iranian conflict will flare up like it did more than 30 years ago, especially when US President Donald Trump’s administration

To refute the US accusations, Iran’s Chief of General Staff Mohammad Baqeri affirmed on June 17 that the country is capable of publicly completely blocking the Strait of Hormuz without carrying out attacks on oil ships.

Hormuz - 'hot strait' in US-Iran tensions

Iranian soldiers during an exercise near the Strait of Hormuz.

Analysts believe that Tehran’s statements are only intended to deter Washington and its allies, because the country is unwilling to block the Strait of Hormuz.

If military measures are applied, Tehran has enough power to sink most cargo ships passing through Hormuz.

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