European mission in Hormuz Strait likely to come up in EU meeting in Finland: Merkel

MNA – German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Wednesday she believed the idea of a European naval mission in the Strait of Hormuz would be discussed again at informal meetings of European foreign and defense ministers in Finland later this month.

“I think the question of a European mission will be discussed there again because this discussion has not yet taken place everywhere and so I believe that the Finnish presidency will play a coordinating role on that,” Merkel told a news conference on Wednesday, according to Reuters.

EU foreign ministers and defense ministers are due to hold informal meetings in Helsinki in late August.

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas has said that Germany will not join a US-led naval mission in the Strait of Hormuz and that it favors a European mission but he has also warned it was rather difficult to make progress on that.

While according to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, the US has asked more than sixty nations to join the US-led coalition in the Strait of Hormuz, the United Kingdom has so far been the only country to agree with the US plan. Other countries have either rejected the US request or they have said that they will take care of the security of their ships themselves.

Furthermore, Iran has said that it is up to the regional countries to look after the security of the Persian Gulf and the Strait of the Hormuz and has opposed any foreign intervention.

KI/PR