A video of Esper’s speech posted on the U.S. Defense Department’s Twitter page.
The Pentagon chief said that “to prevent further escalation of the situation, Saudi Arabia requested international support to help protect the Kingdom’s critical infrastructure,” he said, “the UAE also requested assistance.”
Esper said that in response to requests from these countries, Trump “approved the deployment of the US military, which will mainly focus on air and missile defense.”
Earlier, The Wall Street Journal, citing the US military, said that "the Pentagon is considering sending additional missile defense batteries, another squadron of fighter jets and additional surveillance capabilities in the Middle East."
On September 14, in Saudi Arabia, drones attacked two refineries of the state-owned company Saudi Aramco, after which fires occurred at the plants.
US Assistant Secretary of Defense Jonathan Hoffman said the United States is seriously studying the operation of Saudi Arabian air defense systems in connection with the drone attack on the kingdom’s oil facilities.