Britain said on Monday that it would join a US-led naval security mission in the Strait of Hormuz, where Iran’s seizure of merchant vessels has raised tensions with the West. Earlier, Iran’s foreign minister lambasted recent US financial sanctions against him, calling the move a “failure” for diplomacy. […]
Britain’s Ministry of Defence said it “will draw largely on assets already in the region.” It said the Royal Navy will work alongside the US Navy to escort vessels through the Strait of Hormuz, which sits at the mouth of the Persian Gulf, a shipping channel for one-fifth of all global crude exports.
Two Royal Navy warships are currently in the region, the frigate HMS Montrose and the destroyer HMS Duncan. The Montrose is due to leave for planned repairs later this month. Britain has been giving UK-flagged vessels in the region a naval escort since the Iran’s Revolutionary Guards seized a British-flagged oil tanker last month. Some Iranian officials suggested the seizure of the Stena Impero was retaliation for the seizure of an Iranian oil tanker off the British overseas territory of Gibraltar.