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July 12, 2012 8:05 am

U.S. Deploys Mine-Clearing Drones in Persian Gulf

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USS Ponce. Photo: wiki commons.

LA Times – WASHINGTON — The Navy is rushing dozens of unmanned underwater craft to the Persian Gulf to help detect and destroy mines in a major military buildup aimed at preventing Iran from closing the strategic Strait of Hormuz in the event of a crisis, U.S. officials said.

The tiny SeaFox submersibles each carry an underwater television camera, homing sonar and an explosive charge. The Navy bought them in May after an urgent request by Marine Gen. James Mattis, the top U.S. commander in the Middle East.

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