The US deployed Nimitz aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf to compensate for troop withdrawal

“No specific threat has caused the return of the Nimitz air-naval group,” said Captain Rebecca Rebarich, a spokeswoman for the 5th Fleet covering the Middle East.

By:
EFE

04:28 PM / 28/11/2020

The Pentagon recently deployed the USS Nimitz aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf to compensate for the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan, a military source reported Saturday, denying that this strategy was due to threats after the assassination of an Iranian nuclear scientist.

“No specific threat has caused the return of the Nimitz air-naval group,” said Captain Rebecca Rebarich, a spokeswoman for the 5th Fleet covering the Middle East.

Thus, the presence of the aircraft carrier is not related to the murder on Friday of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, a senior Iranian scientist working in the nuclear sector, he said.

Rebarich specified that the “Nimitz returned to (the area of) the 5th Fleet on November 25”.

The carrier had crossed the Strait of Hormuz, a strategic passage that Iran regularly threatens to block, in September before heading to the Pacific.

In a separate statement, the Pentagon linked this deployment to the “reduction in the number of US military personnel deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan,” announced on November 18 by the new acting Secretary of Defense, Christopher Miller.

About 2,000 soldiers will withdraw from Afghanistan by January 15, and another 500 will leave Iraq, leaving only 2,500 soldiers in each country.

“The US Department of Defense will uphold the security of its forces while continuing to protect Americans and our interests abroad,” the Pentagon said.

During this transition, “the department considered it prudent to have additional defense capabilities in the region to respond to any eventuality,” he added.

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