The U.S., Israel, Bahrain and the UAE started a five-day “multilateral maritime security operations exercise in the Red Sea”. The commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command (NAVCENT) maintained that “maritime collaboration helps safeguard freedom of navigation and the free flow of trade, which are essential to regional security and stability”. Commenting on the drill, an unnamed Israeli officer told reporters that the “[Iranian] presence is something that we need to push back as much as possible from the State of Israel, from the Red Sea, from the areas that harm our freedom to sail… In order to do that, we need to make our partnerships tighter”.
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