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The official gave no further details, but it appears the boat could have been mistaken as a threat in Gulf waters not far from Iran's maritime boundaries.
What happens when it actually is an Iranian vessel that gets shot at without due process of identification/threat assessment.
2. After this incident, the navies of many countries undertook an exercise to revise and update the rules of engagement when confronted with a possible maritime terrorism situation. Two possible scenarios received special attention:
SCENARIO NO 1: An unidentified boat approaches a naval ship in or near a harbor. The revised rules of engagement reportedly provide for immediate neutralisation of such a boat before it could come within ramming or boarding distance of the ship without waiting to verify the intention of the boat. Action can be initiated even at the risk of casualties of innocent civilians.
SCENARIO NO.2: A naval ship moving or patrolling in high seas encounters an unidentified ship or boat moving around in suspicious circumstances or which seems to be coming towards the naval ship. This scenario gives some window for verification. The revised rules of engagement provide for opening fire if the suspicious ship or boat resists attempts at verification or opens fire or seems to be planning to open dire on the naval ship. Appropriately judging the situation and acting is left to the discretion of the naval personnel depending on the circumstances of the case.
3. These revised rules of engagement, which were designed mainly to deal with maritime terrorism situations, also apply to situations involving armed pirates, irrespective of whether they are acting on their own or in association with a terrorist organisation. These revised rules of engagement are now being brought into action by naval ships on anti-piracy patrol in the Gulf of Aden and other areas to counter the activities of Somali pirates. The French naval ships operating in these waters were the first to start using more robust methods to deal with suspected pirate boats and ships. .