Published: Tue, August 13, 2019
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Iraq rejects Israeli participation in US-led naval mission in Gulf

Iraq rejects Israeli participation in US-led naval mission in Gulf

"Iraq is against the participation of the Zionist regime's forces in any kind of patrolling to ensure the safe passage of ships in the Persian Gulf", Alhakim said on Twitter.

Katz said that partnering with the USA was in Israel's strategic interests of countering Ira and boosting ties with Gulf countries.

"Iraq is seeking to reduce tension in our region through peaceful negotiations", he said, warning that "the presence of Western forces in the region will increase tension".

US National Security Adviser John Bolton has argued that former British Prime Minister Theresa May rejected Washington's proposal to join the US-led naval mission in the Gulf.

Al-Hakim stressed that Israel's participation in such a mission was unacceptable, AP said. The strait, that runs between Iran, Oman and the United Arab Emirates, is one of the world's most strategically important locations Iran recently seized several oil tankers amid escalating tensions following USA sanctions on the Islamic Republic. All the US' allies except for the United Kingdom have so far refused to join the coalition.

"Together, the Gulf states can secure the passage of ships", he said.

The US had officially asked Germany to participate - alongside Britain and France - in the coalition, a request that was declined by German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas.

His shocking statement came after reports of Israel thing part in a US-led mission to secure Western vessels in the Strait of Hormuz.

On Sunday, the commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard's navy, which since last month has three tankers in the Gulf, warned that "any illegitimate presence by the Zionists in the waters of the Persian Gulf could spark a war". About 20 percent of the world's oil passes through that area. The U.S. decision to launch an worldwide coalition to protect shipping came after attacks on oil tankers and the seizure of a British oil tanker by Iran in July.

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