The US has begun five-day military maneuvers in the Persian Gulf, claiming it is preparing for a 'potential confrontation' in the region.
According to a US navy statement issued on Wednesday, the joint war games led by
Britain's Royal Navy Commodore Peter Hudson have also brought together vessels
from Britain and Bahrain and started Sunday.
Earlier in August, a large armada of US and European naval vessels were reportedly deployed to the Persian Gulf to reinforce the US strike force in the region.
The deployment took place following a military operation, which saw more than a dozen warships from the US, Britain and France conducting war games in the Atlantic Ocean.
The current statement by the Bahrain headquarters of the US 5th Fleet claims that the joint maneuvers are aimed at better protecting coalition ships against vessels 'deemed threatening'.
This comes as the West has intensified its go-to-war rhetoric against Iran.
The US, the UK and Israel are among countries that accuse Tehran of pursuing a military nuclear program and under such pretext have attempted to portray the country as a threat to regional and global security.
Washington and Tel Aviv have repeatedly threatened to launch military strikes against Iranian nuclear facilities should the country continue with its uranium enrichment program.
This is while the UN body responsible for monitoring Iranian nuclear activities has confirmed that Tehran enriches uranium-235 to a level of 3.7 percent - a rate consistent with the construction of a nuclear power plant. Nuclear arms production requires an enrichment level of above 90 percent.
In reaction to Western threats, Iran has started revamping its military hardware, supplying its navy with sophisticated military equipment, such as a high-tech weapons system, capable of targeting any vessel within a range of 300 km from its shores.
Another high-ranking military official in Iran has warned that Washington would not be faced with 'orthodox and classic tactics' should it attempt to engage in a war with Tehran.
Tehran has repeatedly warned that if the country comes under attack, it would not hesitate in taking necessary measures to protect its sovereignty, including the closure of the Strait of Hormuz.
Commodore Hudson stated that the war games dubbed 'Goalkeeper' are intended for practicing skills such as 'locating and tracking' vessels in the Persian Gulf and 'handling command and control' operations during a potential confrontation.
... Payvand News - 08/29/08 ... --