A British warship has thwarted an attempt by three Iranian boats to "impede" the passage of a BP tanker through the Strait of Hormuz.

The UK ministry of defence said in a statement on Thursday: “Contrary to international law, three Iranian vessels attempted to impede the passage of a commercial vessel, British Heritage, through the strait of Hormuz.

A British naval ship, HMS Montrose, was “forced to position herself between the Iranian vessels and British Heritage and issue verbal warnings to the Iranian vessels, which then turned away,” it added.