Russian Ship 'Aggressively' Approached Navy Destroyer in Arabian Sea, Officials Say

USS Farragut approached by a Russian Navy ship.
On Thursday, Jan. 9, while conducting routine operations in the North Arabian Sea, USS Farragut (DDG 99) was aggressively approached by a Russian Navy ship. (Screen Shot/U.S. Navy Video)

A Navy guided-missile destroyer was forced to sound warning blasts after a Russian ship approached aggressively in international waters, service officials said Friday.

The approach took place Thursday while the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer Farragut was conducting routine operations in the North Arabian Sea, officials said in statements posted to social media.

    "Farragut sounded five short blasts, the international maritime signal for danger of a collision, and requested the Russian ship alter course in accordance with international rules of the road," officials said. "The Russian ship refused but ultimately altered course and the two ships opened distance from one another."

    Related: Russia Has Stopped Buzzing US Ships and Aircraft in Europe, General Says

    Officials with U.S. 5th Fleet decried the Russian ship's delay in taking action to comply with international rules, saying that decision increased the risks of collision between the ships.

      U.S. Naval Forces Central Command officials did not immediately respond to questions about how close the two ships came.

      "The U.S. Navy continues to remain vigilant and is trained to act in a professional manner," officials said.

      Russia has a history of close calls and harassing actions near U.S. ships underway.

      Russian aircraft in particular have frequently buzzed U.S. ships, and executed particularly risky maneuvers in 2016 over the destroyer Donald Cook in 2016.

      Less than a month ago, though, the head of U.S. European Command and NATO, Air Force Gen. Tod Wolters, said there had been no incidents of Russian harassment in that region in the last 90 days, a development he attributed to successful deconfliction dialogues.

      -- Hope Hodge Seck can be reached at Follow her on Twitter at @HopeSeck.

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