UK sends second warship to Gulf

World News
2023-11-30 | 12:09
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UK sends second warship to Gulf

The United Kingdom announced on Thursday the deployment of a second warship to the Gulf to enhance its presence in the region amid "growing concerns" about the safety of commercial navigation routes.

The Ministry of Defense stated in a release that the destroyer "HMS Diamond" is on its way to reinforce the British naval forces in the Middle East, joining the ship "HMS Lancaster" and three mine hunters and a support ship, aiming to "maintain the smooth flow of navigation on commercial routes."

The British government clarified that the deployment of the second warship comes "amid growing concerns about the safety" of commercial navigation routes.

Tensions escalated regarding the safety of maritime routes after the Houthi rebels in Yemen seized control of the Red Sea on November 19, taking over the ship "Galaxy Leader," operated by a Japanese maritime company and owned by a British company owned by an Israeli businessman.

British Defense Minister Grant Shapps stated, "It is essential for the United Kingdom to enhance its presence in the region to protect Britain and its interests in a world increasingly lacking stability," according to the statement.

The ministry pointed out that fifty commercial ships pass daily through the Bab el Mandeb Strait, while approximately 115 commercial ships pass through the Strait of Hormuz.

It emphasized that the Gulf waters are essential shipping routes, including tankers carrying liquefied natural gas to the United Kingdom.

Britain has continuously deployed ships in the region since 1980, and the navy, under the name "Operation Kipion" since 2011, ensures British maritime presence in the Gulf and the Indian Ocean.

Shapps said, "Today's deployment will enhance royal navy patrols, help keep vital trade routes open, and demonstrate that our commitment to regional security is not only continuous but strengthened."

AFP
 

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