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Jeremy Hunt vows to use ‘hard power’ in bid to halt Iran's threats

Jeremy Hunt vows to use ‘hard power’ in bid to halt Iran's threats

2019/07/12 | 18:50

(Hatha al-Youm | Iraq News)-

Jeremy Hunt vowed to boost the “hard power” of the UK’s military

in direct response to “deeply troubling” recent events in the Middle East,

which has seen the nation and Iran’s relationship dramatically deteriorate.The Tory leadership

hopeful warned that the Royal Navy had been “run down too much”, claiming the

latest row between the UK and Iran was proof funding needed to be improved.

Writing in the Daily Telegraph, Mr Hunt said more warships were needed and the

Navy needed to be “expanded to meet the threats we face”. His comments come

after Iranian ships failed to hijack a British oil tanker in the Arabian Gulf.The

ships attempted to seize the UK vessel as it skirted close to Iranian waters.The

ship was ordered to change course before the alleged Revolutionary Guard ships

tried to seize the tanker.But

in his latest attempt to win votes in the upcoming Conservative leadership

battle, Mr Hunt said he would increase warship and carrier-based jets as

“boosting our hard power is the surest way to keep Britain respected

overseas".He

also waded into a dispute that erupted after oil companies argued petrol prices

in the UK would jump up unless relations between the UK and Iran improved.Mr Hunt argued that Iran acted with

“incredible menace” following the attempted to halt the British Heritage

tanker.Iran

responded by saying it had acted in response to the Royal Marines detainment of

an Iranian tanker near Gibraltar last week.The

UK said it acted as it suspected the tanker to breach EU oil sanctions on Syria.The

former Health Secretary said: “When you look at this week’s events it shows

that over recent decades, we have run down the Navy too much.”Following the seizure of the Iranian oil

tanker, Mohsen Rezaei, Secretary of Iran's Expediency Discernment Council

threatened the UK.He

said: "If Britain does not release the Iranian oil tanker, it is the

authorities' duty to seize a British oil tanker."Mohammad

Javad Zarif, Iran’s foreign minister, said the UK’s action had set “a dangerous

precedent and must end now”.Moreover,

the Islamic Republic has also called the UK ambassador to Tehran to lodge a

formal protest against the seizure.











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