US moves Nimitz aircraft carrier in Indo-Pacific region with eye on China

WION Web Team
Washington Published: Feb 04, 2021, 12:49 PM(IST)

USS Nimitz Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

The Biden administration has pulled the carrier from the Gulf in a sign of potentially easing tensions with Iran.

The USS Nimitz Carrier Strike Group is moving to Indo-Pacific Command region, the Pentagon has informed.

In Pics: Why US has deployed warship USS Nimitz in Naval exercise with India

The US aircraft carrier will be departing the Central Command "ensuring our national security and deterring conflict in a very critical region of the world", Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby said.

The Biden administration has pulled the carrier from the Gulf in a sign of potentially easing tensions with Iran. "These decisions are carefully weighed," the Pentagon spokesman said, adding," Supporting Strike Group is a decision driven by a frank assessment of the threats in the area, and also a frank consideration of the capabilities themselves."

"The secretary (Secretary of Defense Lloyd J Austin III) was mindful of the larger geostrategic picture when he approved the movement of the carrier strike group from the Central Command area of responsibility to the Indo PACOM area of responsibility," Kirby added.

According to reports, the current US government could increase its presence in the South China Sea region. Last month, the US had moved USS Theodore Roosevelt in the South China Sea region.

The move is seen as the continuation of a tough approach towards China and the US government's commitment to Taiwan. The former Trump administration had moved Nimitz to the Gulf in November shortly before the assassination of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh although the Pentagon had said there was "no specific threats".

The Pentagon had said earlier that the carrier was stationed in the Gulf to ensure cover for the US troop withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan which was ordered by former President Donald Trump

The US carrier Nimitz had taken part in a naval exercise with Indian, Japanese and Australian forces in the Arabian Sea as part of the Quad group last year.

Read in App