US to send warship, fighter jets to UAE after Yemen attacks: Statement

AFP , Wednesday 2 Feb 2022

The United States will deploy a guided missile destroyer and state-of-the-art fighter jets to help defend the United Arab Emirates after a series of missile attacks by Yemeni rebels, a US statement said Wednesday.

US Naval Forces
(FILES) This file photo handout picture released by the US Naval Forces Central Command/US 5th Fleet, on January 21, 2022 shows Guided-missile destroyer USS Cole (DDG 67) transfering control of a stateless fishing vessel to the Yemen Coast Guard in the Gulf of Oman. (Photo by AFP)

The deployment, to "assist the UAE against the current threat", follows a phone call between Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin and Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, the US embassy in the UAE said.

The UAE, part of the Saudi-led coalition fighting Yemen's Iran-backed Houthi rebels, suffered three missile attacks last month with the first killing three oil workers.

The second targeted Al Dhafra air base, where US forces are stationed, prompting them to fire Patriot interceptors to help shoot down the missiles as air crews scrambled to bunkers.

The guided missile destroyer USS Cole will partner with the UAE Navy and make a port call in Abu Dhabi, the statement said, while the US will also deploy fifth-generation fighter planes.

Other actions include "continuing to provide early warning intelligence", it added.

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