Germany to send frigate Hessen to Red Sea next week for EU mission

The frigate is expected to arrive in the Red Sea by the end of the month.

  • The frigate Hessen of the German Navy, on Monday, June 14, 2010, in the Mediterranean south of Sicily, Italy. (AP)

Germany will send its frigate Hessen to the Red Sea next week to take part in a European operation to “protect merchant vessels” from the operations of the Yemeni Armed Forces in the region, the DPA news agency reported.

According to the news agency, the frigate, equipped, among other weapons, with air defense missiles, is expected to arrive in the Red Sea by the end of the month.

In late January, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said the European Union’s security mission in the Red Sea will be “defensive” and will not involve attacks on Yemeni territory

EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said on January 31 that the European Union aimed to establish and launch the maritime mission in the Red Sea no later than February 19, claiming that it would be “defensive” and no operations would be carried out on land. The EU mission, dubbed Aspides, allegedly aims to focus solely on protecting merchant ships by intercepting Yemeni rockets. 

After the Yemeni Armed Forces vowed to target Israeli and Israeli-bound vessels in the Red and the Arabian seas amid the ongoing aggression on the besieged Gaza Strip, the Pentagon announced the creation of a multinational operation under the pretext of “securing navigation” in the Red Sea.

Under the operation, the US and UK forces recently carried out several aggressions against different locations in Yemen. Later, Sanaa declared that “all American and British interests have become legitimate targets for the Yemeni Armed Forces” in response.

In mid-January, Borrell said the Red Sea was a vital maritime route for the whole world and Europe in particular, which is the reason why he would propose that the EU establish its own mission in the Red Sea. And last week, he announced that EU foreign ministers had agreed to set up the mission.

Read more: Sanaa: We can sink enemy ships in Red, Arabian, Mediterranean Seas

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