Britain Sends Warship To Persian Gulf

13 August, 2019, 17:03 | Author: Wade Massey
  • Javad Zarif and Hassan Rouhani

It was reported in Israel Hayom last week that Foreign Minister Yisrael Katz said, during a closed-door session of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, that Israel was involved in a US-led naval mission protecting ships in the Strait of Hormuz.

Iraq's Foreign Minister Mohammad Ali al-Hakim has said Israel's participation in a US -led coalition to protect shipping in the region is "unacceptable".

The United States has been seeking to assemble an worldwide coalition to "guarantee freedom of navigation" in the Gulf citing attacks on tankers in the strait where about 20 percent of the world's oil trade passes through.

Although the U.S. earlier invited a whole array of countries to join its anti-Iran maritime coalition in the Gulf, the proposal was only accepted by Britain, which became part of the mission last week.

Mohammed al-Hakim tweeted Monday that regional states were capable of securing the strategic waterway themselves and stressed that Israel's participation in such a mission was unacceptable.

On Friday, Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Seyyed Abbas Mousavi warned that the country considers possible Israeli presence in a US-led coalition in the Persian Gulf as a clear threat to its national security, and reserves the right to counter it.

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"The United States and the United Kingdom must assume responsibility for the Zionists regime's illegal presence in the Persian Gulf waters", IRGC Navy Commander Rear Admiral Alireza Tangsiri told Lebanese TV channel Al Mayadeen Sunday.

On Thursday, Commander-in-Chief of the Revolutionary Guard Major General Hossein Salami warned that any new conflict in the region would be a major threat to Israel's existence, saying "a new war will put the Zionist regime under a full-scale threat".

His shocking statement came after reports of Israel thing part in a US-led mission to secure Western vessels in the Strait of Hormuz.

Washington and its Arab allies in the Gulf have accused Iran of carrying out the tanker attacks, allegations that Tehran denies.

Besides Britain, which already has warships on protection duty in the Gulf after a UK-flagged tanker was seized by Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps, other European countries have refrained from joining the planned operation for fear it might harm their efforts to reach a negotiated settlement with Iran.



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