Defense Secretary Mark Esper has said that the United States will send reinforcements to the Gulf region at the request of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, following attacks on Saudi oil facilities which it blames on Iran.
The Pentagon chief said on Fiday an Iranian attack on an American spy drone in June after Tehran seized a British oil tanker, combined with the attack on two Saudi oil installations last Saturday "represents a dramatic escalation of Iranian aggression."
"To prevent further escalation, Saudi Arabia requested international support to help protect the kingdom's critical infrastructure. The United Arab Emirates has also requested assistance," he said.
"In response to the kingdom's request, the president has approved the deployment of US forces, which will be defensive in nature, and primarily focused on air and missile defense," Esper said.
The deployment to the region would be "moderate," Joint Chiefs of Staff Joe Dunford said, but did not specify the type of equipment or exact number of reinforcements, except that it would be fewer than "thousands of troops.
Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.
As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.
Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.