On September 23, Prime Minister Boris Johnson in a statement to international media has asserted that Britain had concluded that Saudi Arabia’s oil facilities were attacked by Iran. He further added that the UK is willing to extend its military support along with US military efforts to strengthen the Gulf kingdom’s defences. The Conservative leader also said the UK would work with other allies to “de-escalate” the rising tensions in the Middle East after the September 14 attack on the world’s biggest oil processor and an oil field. Prime Minister Boris Johnson is set to discuss the issue at UN General Meeting.
Previously Britain kept away from holding Iran responsible for the drone and missile attack. The statement came after Saudi Arabia and the United States blamed Iran for the attack. Johnson in his interview to the international media while travelling from New York to U.N General Assembly said that now “the U.K. is attributing responsibility with a very high degree of probability to Iran” for the drone and missile attack on Saudi’s oil facilities as mentioned by Associated Press. In his statement, he further added that “We will be working with our American friends and our European friends to construct a response that tries to de-escalate tensions in the Gulf region.”
Boris Johnson will meet the Iranian President Hassan Rouhani during the UN General Assembly meeting. According to various media reports, the UK Prime Minister is expected to engage in talks with US President Donald Trump, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and French President Emmanuel Macron.
Johnson said that he wanted to bridge the gap between European friends and the Americans during the tightened crisis in the Gulf region. However, the US and Europe are considered to be on the opposite sides when it comes to dealing with Iran. The European Nations including Britain is committed to the international agreement which restricts Iran’s nuclear ambitions but Donald Trump decided to pull the US out of the deal.
Johnson focused on the requirement for a discretionary reaction to the Gulf strains, however, said Britain would think about any solicitation for military assistance. The Trump organization reported on Friday that it would send extra US troops and missile defence equipment to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. The decision was taken to strengthen the defence forces. Officials reported that the number of troops to be deployed would be in hundreds.
(With inputs from AP)