The Pentagon released new photos Monday that it claims are proof that Iran is responsible for the recent attack on the two tankers in the Gulf of Oman.
The 11 pictures reportedly show an Iranian Revolutionary Guard patrol boat alongside the Kokuka Courageous, including a few that show members of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Navy removing an undetonated mine from the ship’s hull.
The release of the photos only adds to last week’s publication of a video purporting to prove that Iran is behind the attack. Several American allies have likewise accused Tehran of being responsible for the incident, but others have stressed that the evidence is inconclusive and does not clearly demonstrate Iranian involvement.
The German foreign minister is among those demanding more proof, which Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said he would see.
“The German foreign minister has seen a great deal more than just that video. He will continue to see more,” Pompeo said.
Meanwhile, the United States has decided to send additional 1,000 troops in the region, as well as military resources, including intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft, requested by the U.S. Central Command.
“In response to a request from the US Central Command for additional forces, and with the advice of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and in consultation with the White House, I have authorized approximately 1,000 additional troops for defensive purposes to address air, naval, and ground-based threats in the Middle East,” acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said in a statement.
Shanahan stressed that the U.S. was not seeking war with Iran, but maintained that recent attacks only serve to show that Iran poses a threat to American “personnel and interests across the region.”
“The action today is being taken to ensure the safety and welfare of our military personnel working throughout the region and to protect our national interests,” he added.