Saudi Arabia approves deployment of extra 3,000 US troops

Saudi Arabia approves deployment of extra 3,000 US troops amid raised Gulf tensions with Iran
2 min read
13 October, 2019
Saudi Arabia's monarch and crown prince have approved the deployment of thousands of US troops to the Gulf kingdom amid rising tensions with Iran.
Some 3,000 extra US troops will be deployed to Saudi Arabia [Getty]
Saudi Arabia has approved the deployment of thousands more US soldiers and equipment to its territory, the official Saudi Press Agency reported on Saturday.

The move, which was approved by King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, follows last month's attack on Saudi Aramco oil facilities which caused a spike in global oil prices and cut the kingdom's oil output by half.

In the wake of the attack, which Washington blamed on Iran, the US announced that some 3,000 troops, fighter squadrons, as well as air expeditionary wing and air defence personnel would be deployed to the Gulf state.

US President Donald Trump said Riyadh had agreed to pay for the depolyment, however the SPA report said only that the military assistance comes in the context of "historic relations and (a) well-established partnership".

A spate of unexplained attacks on oil tankers and facilities in the Gulf have raised tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia, with Washington backing its major Middle East ally.

The latest incident involved an Iranian oil tanker which was struck by two separate explosions on Friday off the Saudi port of Jeddah.

The state-owned National Iranian Tanker Company confirmed details about the attack, however denied reports that the vessel was struck by missiles fired from Saudi Arabia.

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