U.S. to send 1,500 troops to Middle East for 'protection' against Iran

U.S. to send 1,500 troops to Middle East for 'protection' against Iran

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Saturday a USA decision to deploy 1,500 additional troops to the Middle East was "a threat to global peace and stability".

"The additional deployment to the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility is a prudent defensive measure and meant to reduce the possibility of future hostilities", Shanahan said, referring to the military headquarters that oversees operations in the Middle East. The letter asks the administration not to pursue war with Iran, mainly for strategic reasons.

"I don't think Iran wants to fight", he said."And I certainly don't think they want to fight with us".

"Our policy has not changed", she said. "We're in the region to address many things, but it's not to go to war with Iran". In addition, some 600 of the 1,500 "new" troops are already in the Middle East manning Patriot missiles, but will see their deployments extended.

"It may involve sending additional troops", he said. The Patriot battalion will provide defensive, surface-to-air missile launchers created to shoot down short-range ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and aircraft.

"The attack against the shipping in Fujairah, we attribute it to the IRGC", Admiral Gilday said, explaining that the Pentagon attributed limpet mines used in the attack directly to the IRGC.

The US has about 70,000 troops across the Middle East, including at a major Navy base in Bahrain and an Air Force base and operations center in Qatar. "The Iranians have said publicly they were going to do things".

However, at least one USA military official and a lawmaker expressed to Newsweek doubts on the way the intelligence has been portrayed by the Trump administration, and global powers such as China, the European Union and the United Kingdom-all parties to, and supporters of, the Iran nuclear deal-have called for calm.

Last summer, Iranian leaders threatened to close the Strait of Hormuz.

The Trump administration is also considering using a pre-existing rule that would allow it to expedite arms sales to Saudi Arabia, Tehran's regional foe, as part of its effort to counter Iran, according to two United States officials. He said the deployment was "relatively small".

The Trump administration, facing rising tensions with Iran, plans to reinforce its military presence in the Middle East by sending another few thousand forces to the region to step up missile defense and surveillance, according to USA officials.

The US caught the IRGC attempting to covertly deploy "modified dhows capable of launching cruise missiles", he said, referring to small traditional boats.

The escalation of the USA military presence follows a decision in early May to send an aircraft carrier strike force and B-52 bombers in a show of force against what Washington's leaders believed was an imminent Iranian plan to attack United States assets. Shanahan reportedly briefed President Donald Trump on new military options Thursday night. Around 1,500 service personnel are likely to be despatched, significantly down on the 5,000-10,000 that some administration sources had floated. "That's not accurate", he said Thursday during a press pool.

The request for more protection came from the U.S. Central Command chief, Marine Gen. Kenneth "Frank" McKenzie.

Officials have said the move is not in response to any new threat from Iran, but is aimed at reinforcing security in the region.

On Monday, the president threatened to meet provocations by Iran with "great force", though he tempered his bellicose stance by saying he's also willing to negotiate. Marines also practiced boarding enemy ships. Nearly 600 of the 1,500 troops earmarked for the move are in fact already in the Middle East manning Patriot missiles.

It follows decisions to speed up the deployment of an aircraft carrier strike group as well as to send bombers and additional Patriot missiles to the Middle East.

"America.is sending two warships to the region".

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