U.S. to move USS Arlington and Patriot battery to U.S. Central Command
The Acting Secretary of Defense has approved the movement of USS Arlington (LPD-24) and a Patriot battery to U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) as part of the command's original request for forces from earlier this week.
"These assets will join the USS Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group and a U.S. Air Force bomber task force in the Middle East region in response to indications of heightened Iranian readiness to conduct offensive operations against U.S. forces and our interests," the U.S. Department of Defense said in a statement on May 10.
"The Department of Defense continues to closely monitor the activities of the Iranian regime, their military and proxies. Due to operational security, we will not discuss timelines or location of forces," it said.
"The United States does not seek conflict with Iran, but we are postured and ready to defend U.S. forces and interests in the region," reads the statement.
USS Arlington is a San Antonio-class ship that transports U.S. Marines, amphibious vehicles, conventional landing craft and rotary aircraft with the capability to support amphibious assault, special operations, or expeditionary warfare missions.
"USS Arlington also provides a high quality command and control capability and improved interoperability with our allies and partners in the region," it added.
A Patriot battery is a long-range, all-weather air defense system to counter tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and advanced aircraft.