The Pentagon announced the deployment of new US military assets to the Middle East on Thursday in response to recent attempts by Iran to seize commercial tankers in the region.
Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin ordered the deployment of an Amphibious Readiness Group/Marine Expeditionary Unit (ARG/MEU) into the region. That came in addition to the F-35s, F-16s, and a guided missile destroyer, the USS Thomas Hudner (DDG-116), which were dispatched.
The amphibious unit brings additional aviation, maritime assets, and US Marines, “providing even greater flexibility and maritime capability in the region,” the US Central Command (CENTCOM) said in a statement.
CENTCOM chief Gen. Erik Kurilla said the US was committed to defending the freedom of navigation in the Middle East. “These additional forces provide unique capabilities, which alongside our partners nations in the region, further safeguard the free flow of international commerce and uphold the rules-based international order, and deter Iranian destabilizing activities in the region,” he said.
The Pentagon said it would continue to work with like-minded partners who are committed to the free flow of commerce and would take coordinated actions against threats to the rules-based international order.
Source: Alarabiya News