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US announces Prosperity Guardian military operation in the Red Sea: what is known

Oleksiy LutykovWorld
The United States announces the start of a military operation in the Red Sea

U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin has announced the launch of the Prosperity Guardian military operation in the Red Sea. The head of the US Defense Department noted that the escalation of reckless attacks by Yemeni Houthis threatens the free flow of trade, endangers innocent sailors, and violates international law.

The military operation will unite a number of countries, including the United Kingdom, Bahrain, Canada, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Seychelles, and Spain. This was reported by the press service of the US Department of Defense.

Austin emphasized that the Red Sea is the most important waterway necessary for freedom of navigation, which ensures international trade. He called on countries that seek to uphold the basic principle of freedom of navigation to unite to solve the problem posed by the Houthis.

The Pentagon chief said that the Yemeni Houthis have been launching ballistic missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles at merchant ships from many countries that are legally transiting international waters.

"This is an international problem that requires collective action. That's why I'm announcing Operation Prosperity Guardian, a major new multinational security initiative under the auspices of the Combined Maritime Forces and led by its Task Force 153, which addresses security issues in the Red Sea," Austin said.

According to the Associated Press, the Houthi attacks in the Red Sea have damaged ships and forced several shipping companies to order their crews to stay put and not enter the Bab el-Mandeb Strait until the security situation is resolved.

In turn, the US Central Command reported two more attacks on commercial vessels. According to the military, a drone strike and a ballistic missile hit a tanker off the coast of Yemen. After that, another cargo ship reported an explosion in the water near it.

US announces Prosperity Guardian military operation in the Red Sea: what is known

As a reminder, Yemeni Houthis launched another attack on civilian vessels in the Red Sea on December 18. Two ships were targeted: Swan Atlantic and MSC Clara, owned by Norway and flying the flag of Panama.

As reported by OBOZ.UA:

- On November 19, it became known that Yemeni Houthis seized the civilian cargo ship Galaxy Leader in the Red Sea. The Houthis claimed that the ship belonged to Israel, but the Israeli government denied this.

- The US stated that Iran was responsible for the attacks by Yemeni Houthis on civilian and military vessels in the Red Sea. The United States discussed the option of military escort of ships in the region.

- On December 16, the USS Carney (DDG-64) downed 14 attack drones in the Red Sea. The drones were launched from Yemeni territory controlled by the Houthis.

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