UK signals ready to use force to keep Strait open

UK signals ready to use force to keep Strait open

Britain on Thursday signalled its readiness to use military force if necessary to keep the Strait of Hormuz open, warning Iran not to miscalculate over the West's determination to prevent disruption to the key shipping route, Today's Zaman reported.

Iran threatened last week to stop the flow of oil through the Strait of Hormuz if foreign sanctions were imposed on its crude exports over its nuclear ambitions, a move that could trigger military conflict with economies dependent on Gulf oil.

"Alongside the US 5th Fleet in the Gulf, we have naval assets, we have mine counter-measures capability, we have a frigate present there, and we are an integrated part of the allied naval task force in the Gulf and one of the missions of that task force is to ensure that those shipping lanes remain open," British Defence Secretary Philip Hammond told Sky News.

Iran had made similar threats before, but "there should be no miscalculation by the Iranians about the importance that the international community attaches to keeping the Straits of Hormuz open," Hammond said, speaking from Washington where he has gone for talks with his US counterpart Leon Panetta.

Fears of supply disruptions due to rising tensions between the West and Iran have sent oil prices higher.

"Any attempt to close the Straits of Hormuz would be illegal and we need to send a very clear message to Iran that we are determined that the straits should remain open," Hammond said.

Britain's Royal Navy participates in the Combined Maritime Forces, a US-led, Bahrain-based naval flotilla drawn from 25 nations whose missions include counter-piracy, counter-terrorism and security in the Gulf.

The Strait of Hormuz was one of the world's great commercial arteries and its closure would have very significant consequences for the economies of the world, Hammond said.

He said in a speech in Washington earlier that any attempt by Iran to close the strait would fail.

At the same time, Hammond held out an olive branch to Iran by urging it to return to negotiations to find a peaceful solution to its nuclear dispute with the West.

The West suspects Iran of seeking to develop a nuclear bomb although Tehran insists its nuclear programme is peaceful.

The last round of talks between Iran and six major powers, including Britain, in İstanbul a year ago, got nowhere. Turkey delivered a Western offer for a resumption to Tehran on Thursday and expressed hope they could restart soon.

Britain shut Iran's embassy in London and expelled all its staff after the British Embassy in Tehran was attacked last November by a crowd angry at British sanctions. Britain also closed its Tehran embassy and evacuated its staff.

Hammond, appointed to the job last October, made his first trip to Washington as defence secretary as President Barack Obama unveiled a new defence strategy in line with Pentagon plans to cut spending after a decade of war.

British troops fought alongside Americans in Iraq and still do so in Afghanistan.

Hammond said there was a "clear view both in the UK and the US and indeed in many other allied countries that we will be seeking to avoid prolonged boots-on-the-ground engagements ... of the type that we had in Iraq and that we currently have in Afghanistan (and) that we should invest more in prevention."

"At the same time, of course, the U.S. has to have an eye on the emerging strength of China as a new major military power," he said.

Subscribe to Trend in Google News! Subscribe
Azerbaijan to develop single mobile app for various types of insurance – Central Bank
Azerbaijan to develop single mobile app for various types of insurance – Central Bank
Weekly review of key events in Azerbaijan's ICT sector
Weekly review of key events in Azerbaijan's ICT sector
Iran eyes developing national space industry
Iran eyes developing national space industry
Loading Bars
Latest
Italian Embassy expresses condolences to Azerbaijan over military helicopter crash
Georgian economy grows 6.9% in October 2021
Turkish President to pay visit to Qatar in December
Capacity of crashed military helicopter was 24 people
Manual counting of 29% of protocols show that 7 parties may enter Kyrgyz Parliament
AZAL plane makes emergency landing in Baku
Pakistan seeking to increase trade routes on border with Iran
UN Resident Coordinator expresses condolences over military helicopter crash in Azerbaijan
Any outside influence as cause of helicopter crash out of question - head of Azerbaijani State Border Service
Coordination Headquarters holds another meeting in Azerbaijan (PHOTO)
Azerbaijan's First Deputy Prosecutor General talks investigation, following helicopter crash
Former Turkish PM expresses condolences over helicopter crash in Azerbaijan
French ambassador expresses condolences over crash of military helicopter in Azerbaijan
UK's Ambassador expresses condolences over crash of military helicopter in Azerbaijan
Organization of Turkic States expresses condolences to Azerbaijan due to helicopter crash
Israeli ambassador expresses condolences to Azerbaijan over helicopter crash
Iranian Foreign Ministry expresses condolences to Azerbaijan over helicopter crash
Helicopter crashed while landing at Garaheybat training center – Azerbaijani State Border Service
Status of martyr to be assigned to those killed in plane crash in Azerbaijan (VIDEO)
Turkish President Erdogan holds phone talks with President Ilham Aliyev
President Ilham Aliyev, First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva give instructions on burial of those killed in helicopter crash
Witnesses of helicopter crash being questioned in Azerbaijan – First Deputy Prosecutor General
Turkish Minister of National Defense expresses condolences to Azerbaijani Defense Minister
Flight recorder of crashed military helicopter found in Azerbaijan
Pakistani companies may partake in restoration of Azerbaijan's liberated territories (PHOTO)
Iran looks to boost its energy trade through Economic Cooperation Organization
Iran's ties with Economic Cooperation Organization to boost country's cargo transit
Azerbaijan excludes any outside interference following deadly helicopter crash
IRENEX shares data on sales of Iranol Oil Company
Gas swap agreement is mutually beneficial for Azerbaijan, Iran and Turkmenistan - experts
ICIEC Signs MOU with Japan's Nippon Export and Investment Insurance (NEXI)
Israel's Bezeq Q3 profit up, raises full year outlook
Iran seeks to boost trade ties with Turkmenistan
Pakistan expects $3 billion reserves deposit from Saudi in days
Iran eyes to commission 12 new metro stations in Tehran
Oxford University says no evidence yet that vaccines won't protect against severe disease from Omicron
SOCAR’s STAR Refinery reduces crude oil imports
Iran remains optimistic about Vienna nuclear talks
FMs of Azerbaijan, Turkey hold phone talk
Turkmenistan's crude oil supplies to Turkey down
Azerbaijan's oil export volume down in 10M2021
Footage from crash scene of military helicopter of Azerbaijan’s State Fire Service (PHOTO/VIDEO)
U.S. Int'l Development Finance Corporation provides financing to Bank of Georgia for SMEs support
Kazakhstan boosts crude oil exports to Turkey
Iran's president to speak before parliament
Kazakhstan increases trade with Turkey over 9M2021
Use of Sputnik Light as booster jab for all vaccines approved in UAE
Cargo transportation via internal waters up in Kazakhstan
Central Bank of Azerbaijan reveals amount of sold foreign currency
Azerbaijan shares data on number of vaccinated citizens
Azerbaijan confirms 1,678 more COVID-19 cases, 1,934 recoveries
Azerbaijan opens criminal case on crash of military helicopter of State Border Service
Iran extends condolences to Azerbaijan over military helicopter crash
Turkey talks ongoing support in demining Azerbaijan's liberated lands
Azerbaijan reveals names of dead and wounded in military helicopter crash
Iran beats sets new domestic record regarding transit of goods
President Ilham Aliyev and First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva express condolences to families of those killed in crash of military helicopter of State Border Service
Georgian, Ukrainian, and Moldovan PMs hold meeting in Brussels
Alliance Logistics talks potential of Zangazur corridor in increasing goods transit via Azerbaijan
Uzbek Statistics Committee reveals amount of construction work done for 10M2021
Volume of gas transportation to Turkey via TANAP disclosed
Several Azerbaijani organizations address citizens on omicron coronavirus variant
It is important to cooperate with such partners as Azerbaijan - Head of EU Delegation
Iran reveals COVID-19 data for November 30
Kazakhstan’s oil-producing company to buy batteries via tender
Azerbaijan unveils numbers of mine incidents due to illegal entry into liberated lands
Turkish MoD expresses condolences to Azerbaijan on military helicopter crash victims
Russia, Italy discuss situation in South Caucasus
Georgian Government to co-op with private sector – Business Association
UK health chief says no indication of Omicron wave so far
SOCAR Turkey forecasts growth in its total revenues for 2021
Webinar conference held for youth from Central Asia (PHOTO)
Export prices of Georgian apples increase
Azerbaijani State Customs Committee comments on alleged reduction of $300 limit for orders from abroad
Kazakhstan sees increase in pension savings
Volume of loans issued by private banks of Uzbekistan increases over year
Iran shares import data
Money transfers via Kazakhstan National Bank's payment systems down
Iran increases sale of state assets
Nepal unveils first shock table facility built with Indian aid
Non-OPEC crude oil supply to continue upward trend by 2023
Iran eyes manufacturing goods in Syria, exporting final products to third countries
Azerbaijan to launch social package in 2022 – minister
UAE's ADNOC to supply full crude volumes to Asia buyers in Feb
Azerbaijani president signs order to erect monument to famous poet in Baku
President Ilham Aliyev receives Pakistani Defense Production Minister (VIDEO)
Azerbaijan repairs Shaki ferry ship at Zigh Ship Repair and Construction Yard
Azerbaijan reveals electricity generated by power plants in October 2021
Kazakhstan's banks increase lending over 10M2021
Azerbaijan to develop single mobile app for various types of insurance – Central Bank
AZAL discloses reason for Baku-Nakhchivan flight delay
Georgia’s potato exports to Central Asia up
Russia records 32,648 new daily coronavirus cases, lowest number since Oct 15
Uzbekistan shares data on loan portfolio of its banks in 10M2021
Iran eyes increase in value of exports – IRICA
Georgia’s hazelnut exports continue to increase
Kazakhstan’s Samruk-Kazyna opens tender on car renting services
Azerbaijan’s Central Bank eyes introducing innovation in insurance sector
Georgia’s GDP to reach European level – minister
German companies sign contracts with Azerbaijan in railway construction
All news