The HMS Duncan, a Type 45 air-defence destroyer, has arrived in the Persian Gulf to escort British vessels, a week after Iranian forces seized a UK-flagged oil tanker, the British government said in a statement on Sunday, APA reports citing Sputnik.
Earlier this month, the HMS Duncan was deployed in the Black Sea for Exercise Sea Breeze 2019, involving major naval drills with NATO and partner nations.
“We have relocated from an intense deployment in the Mediterranean and Black Sea, which included support to the French carrier strike group with live operations in Syria,” said Tom Trent, the ship’s commanding officer.
“The Royal Navy continues to deliver consistent, enduring and world-class capability in the region – HMS Duncan is proud to support this vital operation and ready to play her part.” The announcement comes the same day Iran's President Rouhani described the presence of foreign forces as the main factor fuelling tensions in the Middle East.
The destroyer is slated to come off duty in late August, and will be replaced later in the year by the HMS Kent, a Type 23 frigate. The Royal Navy announced her deployment nearly three weeks ago, after the HMS Montrose – until now the only British warship in the area – was allegedly confronted by Iranian boats.