Capable of carrying one helicopter and 100 crew, the ship is reported to be 55 yards long and 14 yards wide, with a speed of up to 28 knots and an operating range of 10,000 kilometers. Currently, a banner with the words "Go to the Bay of Pigs; the Persian Gulf is our home," is said to be displayed on the vessel, in a pointed remark to US ships in the region.
"Bay of Pigs" refers to a failed military invasion of Cuba backed by the US in 1961. Earlier this year the Republican-dominated US House of Representatives introduced a resolution reading that current Iranian military actions were eroding stability in the Persian Gulf.
Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei stated, "The Persian Gulf is our home. It is the Americans who must explain why they have come here from the other side of the world to launch war games."
In August, a US ship in Persian Gulf waters fired three warning shots in the direction of an approaching Iranian ship. In January, ten US Navy sailors were detained by Iran after they drifted into Iranian waters.
Ali Fadavi, Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy (IRGC) Rear Admiral, said, "There is no reason for the presence of the US in the Persian Gulf and we have always regarded and will regard it as a factor behind insecurity and evil acts."