Italian warship shoots down Houthi drone in Red Sea

Italian warship shoots down Houthi drone in Red Sea


The Italian Navy warship, Caio Duilio, shot down a drone in the Red Sea on Saturday. This defensive action was part of the EU’s recently-launched naval operation in the region.

The drone, similar those used in previous attacks launched by the Iranian-backed Houthis, was detected approximately 6 kilometers from the Italian warship and heading towards it.

Currently, Caio Duilio is stationed in the area to ensure freedom of navigation and protect national interests from Houthi attacks. It recently took over duties from the Italian frigate Federico Martinengo, deployed to the region in late December.

“The Houthi terrorist attacks are a serious violation of international law and an attack on the security of maritime traffic, which our economy relies on. These attacks are part of a hybrid war, using every available means, not just military, to harm certain countries and benefit others,” Italian Defense Minister Guido Crosetto said.

The European Union’s Naval Force (EUNAVFOR) launched OPERATION ASPIDES last month. The EU defensive maritime security mission aims to protect against Houthi threats to shipping in the Southern Red Sea and Gulf of Aden. Greece, France, and Germany are also participating in the EU mission.

Italy joins the United States, United Kingdom, France, and Germany whose navies have successfully shot down drones or missiles fired by the Houthis. Despite efforts by these international navies, the Houthis have continued to launch attacks on shipping, with the latest attack reported against an MSC containership on Monday.

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