The Spanish Defense Ministry ordered the frigate Mendez Nunez to be withdrawn from the battle group led by the US aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln, sent to the Middle East, The Nation reported.
According to the source, the decision of the Spanish authorities is temporary. It will act as long as the US aircraft carriers are in the Middle East zone. "The frigate is on a mission of circumnavigation and will not enter into any other type of mission," the Ministry sources revealed, cited by the El Mundo news website, after noting the recent escalation of tensions between the United States and Iran.
On May 5, US security advisor John Bolton said that the US would send a naval strike group led by the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln and a tactical bomber group to the operational zone of the Middle East Command as a signal to the Iranian authorities.
On April 8, US President Donald Trump decided to include the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps on the list of foreign terrorist organizations. The US motivated this move by stating that the IRGC actively participates in terrorist activities, finances and promotes terrorism as an instrument of state policy.
In response, the Iranian Supreme National Security Council counted among the terrorist organizations the US Central Command. On April 23, the Iranian parliament ratified all 14 provisions of the bill by a majority vote, and on April 30, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani signed the relevant law.