Acting U.S. Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan announced on Monday that his country will deploy 1,000 more troops to the Middle East for “defensive purposes” amid growing tensions with Iran.
"I have authorised approximately 1,000 additional troops for defensive purposes to address air, naval, and ground-based threats in the Middle East," Shanahan said in a statement.
"The recent Iranian attacks validate the reliable, credible intelligence we have received on hostile behavior by Iranian forces and their proxy groups that threaten United States personnel and interests across the region. The U.S. does not seek conflict with Iran,” he stated.
"The United States does not seek conflict with Iran. The new deployment is to ensure the safety and welfare of our military personnel working throughout the region and to protect our national interests,” Shanahan added.
The Pentagon on Monday released images it claimed showed that Iran was behind the attacks last week on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman.
Footage show the site where the unexploded mine was allegedly attached, the Iranians on a patrol boat who are said to have removed it, and damage from another device that did explode.
"Iran is responsible for the attack based on video evidence and the resources and proficiency needed to quickly remove the unexploded limpet mine," the Pentagon said in a statement accompanying the new footage.