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South Korea may contribute troops to a U.S.-led maritime security initiative to help protect oil tankers and other commercial vessels from Iranian aggression in the Strait of Hormuz, the Korea Times reported over the weekend.
Seoul is considering deploying an advanced warship to the Strait of Hormuz as early as August at the behest of the United States, the Korea Times noted Friday, citing anonymous sources.
Ships - Strait - Hormuz - Possibilities - Col
“It is obvious that we have to protect our ships passing through the Strait of Hormuz, isn’t it? So we’re considering various possibilities,” Col. Roh Jae-cheon, a spokesman for South Korea’s Defense Ministry, told reporters on Monday, according to Reuters.
“We are looking into various options to ensure the safety of our vessels,” the South Korean colonel added, according to United Press International (UPI). “Some news reports have mentioned a dispatch of troops close to the current Cheonghae Unit, but nothing has been decided.”
Roh - Navy - Anti-piracy - Unit - Pirates
Roh was referring to the South Korean Navy’s anti-piracy unit that has been combating pirates off the coast of Somalia since 2009.
The United States asked South Korea, Japan, France, Germany, Australia, and others to join the initiative in the Strait of Hormuz.
South - Korea - Cheonghae - Unit - Strait
“South Korea would send the Cheonghae unit to the Strait as the U.S. is seeking to enlist other allies for a coalition to operate in waters off Iran and Yemen to increase the safety of commercial shipping and prevent possible attacks that could harm oil supplies,” one unnamed source told the Korea Times.
The region is considered the world’s most strategically important passage for international trade, where...
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