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UK to join US-led maritime security mission in Gulf waters

Christian Fernsby |
Britain has announced plans to join a US-led maritime mission in the Gulf to protect vessels travelling through the Strait of Hormuz, where Iran seized a British-flagged ship last month.

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British officials stressed on Monday that London hadn't changed its policy on Iran, but joining the United States' mission is Prime Minister Boris Johnson's most significant non-Brexit foreign policy move to date.

"It is vital to secure the freedom for all international shipping to navigate the Strait of Hormuz without delay, given the increased threat," said British Defence Secretary Ben Wallace, as reported by Reuters.

"The deployment of Royal Navy assets is a sign of our commitment to our UK-flagged vessels and we look forward to working alongside the US and others to find an international solution to the problems in the Strait of Hormuz.”

Just two weeks ago, Britain had called for a European-led mission in Gulf waters, a proposal that received initial backing from a handful of European Union countries.

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