EU Navy Holds Intercept Operations And Destroys Trade Ship Striker
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JAKARTA - EU naval operations (EU) in the Red Sea are "intercepting and destroying" anything targeting commercial ships in the region, according to EU spokesman Peter Stano.

On Monday (19/2), EU foreign ministers authorized the launch of a naval mission to protect shipping in the Red Sea amid increasing attacks on cargo ships by the Yemen Houthi group, so Italy would take over the command of troops.

"Operation Aspides, which was officially launched yesterday by foreign ministers, is a maritime defense operation and its duty is to protect ships passing through the Red Sea and parts of the Arabian or Persian Gulf." said the EU spokesman at a routine briefing reported by ANTARA from Anadolu, Wednesday, February 21.

"So, this operation has a defense duty to protect these ships, so of course part of the defense duty, which is part of the mandate, is to intercept and destroy everything fired into these commercial vessels," Stano continued.

Participants who follow the mission will not attack the Houthi position in Yemen, as the operation is purely defense, Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani said in early February.

The Houthi movement, which controls large parts of northern and western Yemen, pledged in November 2023 to attack any ship associated with Israel until they halted military action in the Gaza Strip.

This led US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin to announce the formation of a multinational operation to secure shipping in the Red Sea.

US and British forces then launched a massive offensive against the Houthi's position in a bid to deploy insurgents' ability to target commercial vessels.

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