European warships and aerial warning systems are to be deployed from next month to protect merchant shipping.
EU countries have reached a political agreement in principle to launch a military operation to protect merchant shipping in the Red Sea. EU foreign policy chief Joseph Borrell made the announcement after a meeting of foreign ministers in Brussels on Monday evening. According to diplomats, the operation should begin next month and end attacks by the militant Islamist Houthi movement from Yemen.
Militant Islamist militants want to use shelling on ships to end Israeli attacks in the Gaza Strip following an unprecedented massacre by Hamas in Israel on October 7. According to current plans, the EU operation would involve sending European warships and aerial warning systems to the area to protect cargo ships. However, participation in US strikes against Houthi positions in Yemen is not planned.
Given the risks, major shipping companies are increasingly avoiding the narrow sea route between Asia and Europe via the Red Sea and the Suez Canal. It has now had a significant impact on the global economy. The United States and Great Britain have recently been conducting preemptive strikes against Houthi targets in Yemen.
Spain defends itself against “anti-piracy Operation Atlanta”.
The EU's original plan was to extend the mandate of the existing anti-piracy operation “Atalanta” in the Indian Ocean to operate in the Red Sea. However, the plan failed due to opposition from Spain, currently the lead country in Operation Atlanta.
The reason for the veto was a dispute within the Spanish coalition government over the country's participation in military operations in the Red Sea. The left in particular sympathizes with the desire to force Israel to end military operations in the Gaza Strip.
Meanwhile, Houthi rebels said they attacked a US military cargo ship in the Gulf of Aden. It was “Ocean Jazz”. No further details were initially available. (APA/DPA)