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The coastal patrol ships were operating as part of an international task force called Combined Task Force (CTF) 150, which has increased regional patrols to locate and disrupt unlawful maritime activity. CTF 150 is one of three task forces under Combined Maritime Forces.
In 2021, CTF 150 has seized illegal drugs worth more than $193 million (at regional wholesale prices) during counter-narcotics operations at sea. This is a higher total value than the amount of drugs the task force interdicted in the previous four years combined.
International naval forces operating in support CTF 150 regularly conduct maritime security and counter-terrorism operations at sea outside the Arabian Gulf to disrupt criminal and terrorist organizations and their related illicit activities, including the movement of personnel, weapons, narcotics and charcoal. These efforts help ensure legitimate commercial shipping transits the region free from non-state threats.
The U.S. Navy released the stateless fishing vessel and its nine crew members, who identified themselves as Iranian nationals, after seizing the drugs.
Combined Maritime Forces is the largest multinational naval partnership in the world. The organization includes 34 nations and is headquartered in Bahrain with U.S. Naval Forces Central Command and U.S. 5th Fleet.
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