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21 Jan, 2020 09:36

S. Korea to send vessel, 300 troops to Strait of Hormuz after US pressure

S. Korea to send vessel, 300 troops to Strait of Hormuz after US pressure

South Korea will send a naval destroyer and 300 troops to the Strait of Hormuz, the Defense Ministry in Seoul said on Tuesday. The move follows pressure from the US amid tensions between Washington and Tehran, AFP said.

Iran has been blamed for a series of attacks on shipping vessels in the strait, a strategic point for the world’s oil trade, where the US has deployed a naval mission. Seoul has had diplomatic relations with Tehran since the early 1960s, and until last year Iran was one of the resource-poor South’s key oil suppliers.

The Defense Ministry said that Seoul had decided to “temporarily expand” the deployment area of its anti-piracy military unit operating off the coast of Somalia to include the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman, which are linked by the Strait of Hormuz.

It will not be part of the US naval mission, although two liaison officers will be sent to the US headquarters for “information sharing.”