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Greek Navy's Hydra class frigate Hydra shoots down 2 Houthi drones.

| Naval News Navy 2024

According to information published by the European Union on March 13, 2024, the Greek frigate Hydra, actively participating in the EUNAVFOR ASPIDES mission, successfully neutralized an aerial threat posed by two Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs).
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Hellenic Navy's Hydra class frigate Hydra. (Picture source: Nikos Dendias)

EUNAVFOR ASPIDES, launched by the European Council on February 19, 2024, is a defensive maritime security operation aimed at safeguarding freedom of navigation in the Red Sea and the Gulf.

The operation was initiated in response to numerous attacks by Houthi militants on international commercial vessels since October 2023, particularly to support the Palestinian militant group Hamas in its conflict with Israel. The mission underscores the European Union's commitment to restoring maritime security and ensuring safe passage in a strategically vital maritime corridor.

The operation's mandate includes providing maritime situational awareness, accompanying vessels, and protecting them against possible multi-domain attacks at sea. It will operate along the main sea lines of communication, including the Baab al-Mandab Strait and the Strait of Hormuz, covering international waters in the Red Sea, the Gulf of Aden, the Arabian Sea, the Gulf of Oman, and the Gulf.

This comprehensive coverage aims to mitigate the threats posed by Houthi attacks, which have jeopardized the safety of civilians and the freedom of navigation, challenging the principles enshrined in the United Nations Convention of the Law of the Sea.

EUNAVFOR ASPIDES is led by Operation Commander Commodore Vasileios Gryparis, with Rear Admiral Stefano Costantino serving as the Force Commander. The operation headquarters is based in Larissa, Greece.

It will coordinate closely with EUNAVFOR ATALANTA, an ongoing EU mission aimed at enhancing maritime security in the West Indian Ocean and the Red Sea, to maximize the effectiveness of the EU's maritime security efforts in the region.

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