'UK speeding up planning for potential US-led Iran attack'

'Guardian' reports UK Ministry of Defense believes US may have intensified plans for targeted missile strikes of Iranian nuclear targets.

By JPOST.COM STAFF
November 2, 2011 21:00
1 minute read.
Suspected uranium-enrichment facility near Qom

Iranian nuclear program 311 (R). (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
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The British military is accelerating planning for its part in a potential US-led attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities, The Guardian reported on Wednesday, days after the UK’s military chief visited Israel.

Defense Minister Ehud Barak is currently in London on a state visit, where he met with senior officials, including British National Security Adviser Peter Ricketts.

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The Iranian nuclear threat is believed to be at the top of the agenda of talks between Barak and British officials.

According to the Guardian report, the British Ministry of Defense believes the US may have intensified plans for targeted-missile strikes of Iranian nuclear targets.

The newspaper quoted British officials as saying that the UK would help the US in such a mission.

Britain is reportedly examining locations for mobilizing its Royal Navy ships and submarines to assist a possible American aerial and naval campaign against Iran.

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Washington could also ask London for permission to use the British island of Diego Garcia, in the Indian Ocean, as a base of operations.

Meanwhile, an army source told The Jerusalem Post that British military chief Gen. David Richards visited Israel this week.

Richards was a guest of IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz, the source said.

He arrived as “part of an annual visit” aimed at maintaining international cooperation, the source said. The source did not disclose the content of talks held by Richards and Israeli officials.

The visit was not announced earlier because it is standard practice in Britain to refrain from publicizing such visits while they occur.

The army source confirmed that “no announcement was released” during Richards’ arrival.

“The IDF has a system of international cooperation which sees foreign figures visit Israel,” the source said

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