State TV: Iran’s Guard launches drill near Strait of Hormuz

December 22, 2018 GMT

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — State TV is reporting that Iran’s Revolutionary Guard ground force has launched a drill near the strategic Strait of Hormuz, the passageway for nearly a third of all oil traded by sea.

The report Saturday said the guard’s forces will use combat helicopters and drones around Qeshm Island at the mouth of the straight.

The annual war game dubbed “The Great Prophet” came a day after the USS John C. Stennis, a U.S. aircraft carrier, sailed into the Persian Gulf on Friday. The Guard’s vessels trailed the Stennis and launched a drone to film the American ship.

Tehran feels increasingly under pressure after President Donald Trump in November renewed sanctions that the U.S. had lifted under a 2015 nuclear deal. The U.S. pulled out of the deal in May.