WASHINGTON, Jan. 19 (UPI) -- A U.S. Navy vessel in the Persian Gulf helped the crew of a disabled Iranian fishing vessel Wednesday by providing food and water, officials say.
The incident was the third in January in which Iranian seamen have received aid from the Navy, The New York Times reported. In the most dramatic, a team from the aircraft carrier John C. Stennis rescued 13 Iranians who were being held by Somali pirates.
A U.S. Coast Guard vessel came across an Iranian fishing vessel or dhow with a flooded engine room. The six men on board were rescued and transferred to the Iranian Coast Guard.
The destroyer Dewey Wednesday came across a fishing boat that was sinking and was being towed by another boat. Lt. Jason Dawson, who led a team to the boats, said he learned they needed food and water and the Navy provided about 150 pounds of supplies.
Pentagon officials say the Fifth Fleet has not been given orders to look for Iranians to rescue.
"It's just been serendipitous," a senior Pentagon official told the Times.