U.S. hikes troop levels in Mideast as tension rises

National News

June 18, 2019 - 10:37 AM

Acting Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan ABACA PRESS/MARTIN SIMON/TNS

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. is sending 1,000 more troops to the Middle East as tensions in the Persian Gulf mounted today over Iran’s announcement it will not comply with the international agreement that keeps it from making nuclear weapons. At the same time, Iran insisted it was not seeking war.

Iran’s announcement Monday that it could soon start enriching uranium to just a step away from weapons-grade levels challenged President Donald Trump’s assurances to allies that the U.S. withdrawal from the deal last year made the world a safer place.

The Pentagon responded by ordering 1,000 more troops to the Middle East, including security forces for additional surveillance and intelligence-gathering. The escalation of American military might was aimed at deterring Iran and calming allies worried about the safety of strategic shipping lanes.

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