US Secretary of Defence Authorizes Military Personnel, Resource Deployment to Saudi Arabia

U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel left is greeted by Deputy Defense Minister Salman bin Sultan bin Abdulaziz right after he arriving at Riyadh Air Base on Monday Dec. 9 2013 in Riyadh Saudi Arabia

US to deploy troops to Saudi Arabia in face of 'credible' regional threats

An official from the Saudi Ministry of Defense stated Friday that "based on the mutual cooperation between Saudi Arabia and the USA, and their desire to enhance everything that could preserve the security of the region and its stability".

King Salman of Saudi Arabia has approved hosting the United States military in his country to bolster both stability and security, according to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA).

Amidst soaring tensions in the Gulf, Saudi Arabia has made a decision to host U.S. troops in a joint move with Washington to boost regional security, its defence ministry said on Friday.

Then on Thursday President Donald Trump said a USA warship had destroyed an Iranian drone that came too close.

The US wanted to base its troops in the area because security assessments had shown Iranian missiles would have a hard time targeting the remote area.

Putting US combat forces back in Saudi Arabia, after an absence of more than a decade, adds depth to the regional alignment of US military power, which is mostly in locations on the Persian Gulf that are more vulnerable to Iranian missile attack.

BBC North America correspondent Peter Bowes says the USA is understood to be deploying Patriot air defence missile batteries manned by 500 soldiers to Prince Sultan Base in Saudi Arabia.

The United States has authorised the deployment of military personnel and resources to Saudi Arabia, the Pentagon says, to provide "an additional deterrent" in the face of "emergent, credible threats" in the region.

Earlier in the day, CENTCOM announced that the USA armed forces have surveillance aircraft observing the situation in the Strait of Hormuz.

In response to attacks on four other tankers on May 12, USA officials announced that month plans said to send 900 more forces - including engineers and a fighter aircraft squadron - to the Middle East to bolster U.S. defence, as well as extend the deployment of some 600 personnel manning Patriot missiles.

Tensions in the Gulf increased further on Friday after Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) said its forces captured a British oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz for allegedly violating worldwide laws.

Washington on July 19 said it had shot down an Iranian drone that was menacing a US warship in the Strait of Hormuz, while Tehran denied that it had lost such a craft.

Iran on July 19 seized a British-operated oil tanker in the strait and briefly detained another in an apparent retaliation for a seizure off Gibraltar - a British territory - of an Iranian tanker on July 4. The US insisted the drone had been over worldwide waters at the time, and condemned it as an unprovoked attack.

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