Kuwait prepares joint cooperation protocol to protect ports amid Iran tensions

Kuwait prepares joint cooperation protocol to protect ports amid Iran tensions
Published: 15 July 2019 - 10:39 a.m.
By: Logistics Middle East Staff

Kuwait’s navy and ports authority will prepare security plans to protect its ports amid heightened tensions between Iran and the West, reports Gulf News.

The key Opec exporter wants to ensure that it’s access to market is not impacted by a potential conflict in the region.

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A joint cooperation protocol was signed “at an important period which the region is passing through security-wise,” Kuwait Port Authority manager Shaikh Yousuf Abdullah Al Nasser Al Sabah said.

Shaikh Yousuf said concerted efforts were needed to maintain the security of Kuwait’s ports and “ensure full readiness for any potential emergency,” including training and exchange of experiences, according to a report by state-run KUNA.

Relations between Iran and the West have become increasingly strained after Britain seized an Iranian tanker in Gibraltar last week and then sent the warship HMS Montrose to intercept an attempt by Iran to allegedly block a British-owned tanker from passing through the Strait of Hormuz.

The most recent incidents followed several attacks on tankers since May around the Strait of Hormuz and the Gulf of Oman, which the United States has blamed on Iran.

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The two foes came close to direct military conflict last month when Iran shot down a US drone and President Donald Trump ordered retaliatory air strikes, only to call them off minutes before they were due to start.

Tensions have risen sharply since Washington stepped up economic sanctions against Iran and moved to bring its oil exports to zero as part of a “maximum pressure” policy to make Iran halt actions that it said undermined regional security.

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