The European Union will start discussions on launching its own military mission in the Red Sea this week, EU foreign policy spokesman Peter Stano said at a briefing, APA reports citing TASS.
"The high representative said that he indeed intends to propose the creation of a EU specific military mission in the Red Sea," he said, adding that EU countries will begin discussing this mission later this week.
He explained that launching such a mission would require a unanimous decision in the EU Council. According to Stano, although most EU countries have refused to participate in a US-led operation in the Red Sea, they will act in close coordination with the country.
Following the escalation of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict in the Gaza Strip, the Yemeni rebels (Houthis) declared that they would attack Israeli territory and would not allow any ships affiliated with it to pass through the waters of the Red Sea and the Bab el-Mandeb Strait until the operation in the Palestinian enclave is halted. The US Central Command estimates that the Houthis have attacked over 20 ships and civilian vessels in the Red Sea since mid-November.
In response to the movement’s actions, US officials announced the formation of an international coalition and the preparation of Operation Prosperity Guardian to ensure freedom of navigation and protection of ships in the Red Sea. The operation will include Bahrain, Canada, Denmark, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Seychelles, Spain and the United Kingdom.