Israel Navy Ship Accidentally Enters Waters of Neighboring Arab Nation

Commander sent to jail after a navigational error caused his reconnaissance vessel to cross several hundred meters into neighboring waters before being ordered back by Israeli radar station.

An Israel Navy reconnaissance vessel accidently entered the territorial waters of a neighboring Arab nation last week, in an incident first reported by Channel 10 on Sunday.

According to a probe by Israel Defense Forces, the ship's commander reputedly committed a navigational error, which caused the "Dvora"-class ship to enter 700 meters into the neighboring country's waters.

Israel Navy - IDF Spokeman's Office
IDF Spokesman's Office

The infiltration was not detected by the neighboring country's forces, with an Israel Navy radar warning the vessel and directing it toward international waters.

An IDF spokesperson said in response that the military conducted "an operational investigation in which the ship's commander was tried and sentenced to prison," stressing that the ship "went over by only a few hundred meters."

The incident took place only two days after another naval mishap, one which caused seven Israeli employees of a private security firm to be briefly arrested by the Egyptian Navy near the Straits of Tiran in the Red Sea.

The four security men and three other crew members were arrested on a yacht Wednesday after they reportedly threw their personal weapons overboard in a fright upon noticing a nearby Egyptian naval patrol.

The Israeli yacht was escorted into the Sinai port city of Sharm el-Sheikh, where the Israelis were interrogated. At that point, official contact between the Israeli foreign ministry and its Egyptian counterpart began in order to clarify what the Israeli side said was a misunderstanding.

Following several hours of detention, the seven were released early Thursday morning, and made their way to the southern city of Eilat.