Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Western Fleets May Head To Syria To Evacuate Civilians - Or For Something Else?

The U.S., France and the United Kingdom look set to increase their naval presence in the Middle East as the chaos in Syria continues.

Late last week, Britain's Telegraph reported that the country's Ministry of Defence was in the process of preparing contingency plans for evacuating British nationals from the Middle East, should the ongoing conflict in Syria further spill across borders into neighboring Lebanon and Jordan.
The British would likely send the HMS Illustrious, a helicopter carrier, along with the HMS Bulwark, an amphibious ship, as well as an advanced destroyer to provide defenses for the task force. On board will be several hundred Royal Marine commandos, as well as a complement of AH-64 attack helicopters (the same ones used in Libya last year).
A fleet of French ships, including the Charles De Gaulle aircraft carrier, carrying a complement of Rafale fighter aircraft, are expected to join them. 
Those forces are expected stay offshore and could escort specially chartered civilian ships meant to pick up foreign nationals fleeing Syria and surrounding countries.
Asian Defence News

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