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Europe adopts an active role in Middle East maritime security.
 
11/26/2020
 

France Postures to Confront Iran

Europe adopts an active role in Middle East maritime security.

BY WARREN REINSCH

Iran’s September 15 attack on the Abaqiq oil processing facility rattled Europe’s economy, causing stock exchanges to plunge into the red. When trading began in London, Brent crude oil prices surged 20 percent. Many "gravely concerned" European leaders watched as a "locked and loaded" United States failed to retaliate. After several unanswered Iranian attacks and seizures of trading vessels, Europe is beginning to take an active role in Middle East security by positioning itself militarily to confront Iran.

On Sunday, leaders, foreign ministers and defense officials from around the world gathered in Bahrain to attend the Manama Dialogue organized by the International Institute of Strategic Studies. At the meeting, French Defense Minister Florence Parly said France intends to fill the void created by a "deliberate, gradual U.S. disengagement" from the Middle East.

Jerusalem Post Middle East analyst Seth Frantzman called Parly’s speech a "shot across the bow of U.S. policy" and a "signal" that France is seeking "a deeper role" in Middle East security.

 
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