The US Navy announced that its aircraft carrier and naval vessels passed through the Strait of Hormuz to enter the Gulf on Friday, while Washington threatens to re-impose “UN” sanctions on Tehran without the support of its Security Council partners.
The US Fifth Fleet said in a statement that an attack group led by the Nimitz aircraft carrier, which includes two cruisers equipped with guided and destructive missiles equipped with guided missiles, sailed in the Gulf to work and train with US partners and support the coalition fighting ISIS.
“The Nimitz Strike Group has been operating in the Fifth Fleet’s area of operations since July and is in peak preparation,” said Commander of the Assault Group Admiral Jim Kirk.
The move came just days after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo pledged to impose an arms embargo and other international sanctions against Iran that the United States says will resume Saturday.
Pompeo pledged Tuesday that Washington would prevent Iran from purchasing Chinese and Russian military equipment, even as European allies disagree with Washington’s stance.
“We will act this way: We will prevent Iran from acquiring Chinese tanks and Russian air defense systems and then selling weapons to Hezbollah,” Pompeo said.
On Wednesday, he said that the United States will apply the resumed UN sanctions on Iran, starting from next week, under the “return to the previous status” clause stipulated in the nuclear deal.
However, the rest of the members of the Security Council disagree with the United States in this position, as they consider that Washington lost its right to activate this mechanism when it withdrew from the nuclear agreement in 2018.
“We will do everything necessary to ensure that these sanctions are applied and respected,” Pompeo added.
Washington regularly sends aircraft carrier groups to the Gulf to train and support US and anti-ISIS coalition operations in Syria and Iraq.
But the Trump administration has sought to escalate the pressure on Tehran.
According to the International Atomic Energy Agency, Iran has intensified its nuclear development activities since the United States unilaterally withdrew from the nuclear deal in 2018.
Washington says that despite its withdrawal, it has the right to force the United Nations to re-impose sanctions on Iran over Tehran’s alleged breach of the agreement.