“Only information related to the release of hostages will be transmitted”
British reconnaissance planes have been sent to the Middle East to search for the locations of Hamas hostages in Gaza. The UK Ministry of Defense says any information about the potential whereabouts of the captives will be passed on to Israel.
Britain will conduct reconnaissance flights over Israel and Gaza to find the locations of hostages being used by Hamas, the UK Ministry of Defense has said.
According to The Guardian, representatives of the British Ministry of Defense said that the reconnaissance flights would use a number of unarmed aircraft, including the Shadow R1, which is used to collect intelligence.
Information about the potential whereabouts of the prisoners will be passed on to Israel.
“The safety of British citizens is our top priority,” the military department said in a statement. – In support of the ongoing hostage rescue operation, the UK Ministry of Defense will conduct reconnaissance flights over the Eastern Mediterranean, including airspace over Israel and the Gaza Strip. Surveillance aircraft will be unarmed, will not have a combat role, and will be tasked solely with finding hostages. Only information relevant to the release of the hostages will be transmitted to the relevant authorities responsible for the rescue of hostages.”
Fighting resumed in Gaza on Friday following a week-long truce between Israel and Hamas in which 80 Israeli hostages were released in exchange for 240 Palestinian prisoners.
It is believed that there are still more than 130 hostages in the Gaza Strip, The Guardian recalls.
In the weeks following the Hamas attack on Israel on 7 October, Downing Street reported that at least 12 British citizens had been killed in the attack and that another five were still missing.
Some are believed to have been stolen, but the British government has not confirmed how many.
A week after the October 7 attack, the UK government announced that military units would be deployed to the Eastern Mediterranean “to support Israel, strengthen regional stability and prevent escalation.”
This military package, according to The Guardian, included P8 aircraft, surveillance equipment, two Royal Navy ships - RFA Lyme Bay and RFA Argus, three Merlin helicopters and a company of Royal Marines.
On Thursday, Defense Secretary Grant Shapps announced that the Type 45 destroyer HMS Diamond would also be deployed to the region to counter growing threats to shipping from Iran and Tehran-backed groups.