plans to protect the key OPEC exporter‘s ports amid heightened tensions between Iran and the West, state news agency KUNA said on
Saturday.A joint cooperation protocol was signed "at an
important period which the region is passing through security-wise,"
Kuwait Port Authority Manager Sheikh Yousef Abdullah al-Nasser al-Sabah was
quoted as saying.Sheikh Yousef said concerted efforts were needed to maintain
the security of the small Gulf state‘s ports and "ensure full readiness
for any potential emergency," including training and exchange of
experiences, according to the KUNA report.Relations between Iran and the West have become increasingly
strained after Britain seized an Iranian tanker in Gibraltar last week and
London said its warship HMS Montrose had to fend off Iranian vessels seeking to
block a British-owned tanker from passing through the Strait of Hormuz.The most recent incidents followed a spate of attacks on
tankers since May around the Strait of Hormuz and the Gulf of Oman, which the
United States has blamed on Iran and are denied by Tehran.The two foes came close to direct military conflict last
month when Iran shot down a US drone and President Donald Trump ordered
retaliatory air strikes, only to call them off minutes before.Tensions have risen sharply since Washington stepped up
economic sanctions against Iran and moved to bring its oil exports to zero as
part of a "maximum pressure" policy to make Iran halt actions that it
said undermined regional security.
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