U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said Sunday that the Pentagon is sending warships and fighter jets to the Eastern Mediterranean region in a show of support for Israel amid escalating conflicts between Israeli forces and Hamas fighters.
Austin said in a statement that he had directed the movement of the USS Gerald R. Ford Carrier Strike Group, which consists of an aircraft carrier, a guided missile cruiser and four guided missile destroyers, to the Eastern Mediterranean.
The Pentagon had also “taken steps to augment U.S. Air Force F-35, F-15, F-16 and A-10 fighter aircraft squadrons in the region,” the defense chief said.
He added that the U.S. government “will be rapidly providing the Israel Defense Forces with additional equipment and resources, including munitions.”
The first round of U.S. security assistance to Israel “will begin moving” on Sunday “and arriving in the coming days,” Austin said.