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USNS Rappahannock Fires After Vessel Ignores Warnings

American Forces Press Service

U.S. NAVY 5th FLEET AREA OF OPERATIONS, July 16, 2012 – A security team aboard the USNS Rappahannock today fired on a small motor vessel after it disregarded warnings and rapidly approached the ship near Jebel Ali, United Arab Emirates, according to a U.S. Naval Forces Central Command news release issued today.

In accordance with Navy force protection procedures, the sailors aboard the Rappahannock, a refueling ship, used a series of nonlethal, preplanned responses to warn the vessel before resorting to lethal force, the release said.

The Rappahannock’s crew repeatedly attempted to warn the vessel's operators to turn away from their deliberate approach, the release said.

When those efforts failed to deter the approaching vessel, the security team on the Rappahannock fired rounds from a .50-caliber machine gun, according to the release.

The incident is under investigation, the release said.

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