The answer will undoubtedly be strong. Faced with repeated attacks by the Houthis against merchant ships in the Red Sea, the United States on Monday evening, December 18, announced the formation of a ten-nation coalition to fight the Yemeni rebels. “The recent escalation of reckless Houthi attacks from Yemen threatens to disrupt trade, endanger the lives of innocent sailors and violate international law.” US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin underscored “Installation of Action “Keeper of wealth“».
In addition to the United States, the coalition will be formed by France – whose diplomatic chief Catherine Colonna on Sunday assessed the Houthi attacks. “Can’t Be Unanswered” –, United Kingdom, Bahrain, Canada, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Spain and Seychelles. This is “Multinational Security Initiative” has “Under the auspices of the Combined Maritime Forces [CMF, un partenariat maritime international à la direction tournante qui a pour mission d’assurer la sécurité en haute mer, ndlr] and under the direction of Joint Task Force 153. Formed in April 2022 to ensure security in the Red Sea, Bab al-Mandeb Strait and the Gulf of Aden, it is one of five task forces managed by the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF).
Ship owners are leaving the area
Lloyd Austin, who visited Israel on Monday, earlier called on Iran to stop “support” Houthi operations against merchant ships. The Jewish state was not one of the states named by the Pentagon chief as part of the coalition in the Red Sea, while the Houthis said they were attacking ships they believed to be in the Red Sea. “Connected to Israel”.
Faced with increased attacks by Yemeni rebels in recent days, the shipping giants are moving through the strategic Bab al-Mandeb strait that separates the Arabian Peninsula from Africa, through which 40% of world trade passes. Following the example of many other ship owners, British hydrocarbon giant BP and Taiwanese shipping company Evergreen announced on Monday that they would suspend all traffic in the Red Sea.
Late last week, Danish Maersk, German Hapag-Lloyd, French CMA CGM and Italian-Swiss MSC announced their ships would not enter the zone. “Until further notice”.
“Highway of the Sea”
The Houthis, who control much of Yemen, have warned that they will target ships sailing off the country’s coast if they are linked to Israel, in retaliation for the war between the Jewish state and the Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas in the Gaza Strip. Several missiles and drones were shot down by warships patrolling the area.
The Red Sea is a “Highway of the Sea” The Mediterranean connects the Indian Ocean and therefore connects Europe to Asia. About 20,000 ships pass through the Suez Canal each year, the entry and exit point for ships transiting the Red Sea.