We blame you, America tells Iran as it sends in 1500 additional troops to the Middle East
A senior Pentagon officer says the US blames Iran and its proxies for the recent tanker bombings near United Arab Emirates and a rocket attack in Iraq.
A senior Pentagon officer says the U.S. blames Iran and its proxies for the recent tanker bombings near United Arab Emirates and a rocket attack in Iraq.
Vice Admiral Michael Gilday says the U.S. has a high degree of confidence that Iran's Revolutionary Guard was responsible for the explosions on four tankers, and that Iranian proxies in Iraq fired rockets into Baghdad.
Gilday, the Joint Staff director, says the latest decision to send 1,500 additional troops to the Middle East will boost surveillance of Iranian forces and their proxies. The additional forces will include more manned and unmanned aircraft, a squadron of fighter jets, a Patriot missile battalion and military engineers.
He did not provide direct evidence to back up claims tying Iran to the attacks. He told reporters the conclusions were based on intelligence and evidence gathered in the region.
President Donald Trump earlier said the U.S. will bolster its military presence in the Middle East with the additional forces.
He says the troops will have a "mostly protective" role. He spoke to reporters on the White House lawn as he headed out on a trip to Japan.
The U.S. began reinforcing its presence in the Persian Gulf region this month in response to what it said was a threat from Iran.
The administration had notified Congress earlier Friday about the troop plans.
Acording to a copy of the notification obtained by The Associated Press, the forces would number "roughly" 1,500 and would deploy in the coming weeks, "with their primary responsibilities and activities being defensive in nature."