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The World

February 23, 1988

A U.S. warship on its initial voyage in the Persian Gulf fired warning shots at a pair of fishing boats that crew members initially believed were attack vessels. A U.S. military official, asking not to be identified, said the amphibious transport ship Trenton took the action "after it observed two apparent Boghammar-type boats (frequently used as attack vessels by Iran) coming toward it" about 30 miles off the coast of Dubai. After two voice warnings, which he said were ignored, the Trenton "fired a flare and bursts of .50-caliber machine-gun fire" in the direction of the boats. The craft, later identified as fishing vessels, veered away.

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