The UK is continuing to step up its military support to the Caribbean Islands left devastated by Hurricane Irma.
Named Operation Ruman, on Friday nearly 300 UK military personnel equipped with aid supplies left the UK to provide immediate relief to people who have seen their homes destroyed.
RFA Mounts Bay which has been deployed in the Caribbean since July in preparation for the hurricane season (and ready to provide support at a moment’s notice) was the UK’s first military response to the Caribbean.
Since then a C17, Voyager and A400M aircraft which carried over 200 Royal Marines, as well as Engineers and specialist personnel from all three Services, medical supplies and aid including emergency shelter kits, rations and clean water has also been sent.
The Government announced earlier this week that they would be sending a military task group to reinforce RFA Mounts Bay after its emergency response was criticised as “pathetic” compared to French and Dutch efforts in the region.
Priti Patel, the International Development Secretary, denied Britain had been caught under prepared by the biggest storm to hit the region in decades.
She said: “We’ve had the vessel out there and that vessel has been equipped with the right people and the right skills and the right equipment and the reality is of course, it’s been a difficult environment to get into because of the scale of the hurricane and the extent to which the devastation has hit the countries as well.”