French navy intercepts two Houthi drones from Yemen

The French navy has shot down two drones over the Red Sea where Yemen’s Houthis have been attacking ships, the defence ministry in Paris said Tuesday.

Large explosions can be seen in footage released by France from its patrol zones in the Red Sea.

The navy detected “multiple drone attacks originating in Yemen” overnight Monday to Tuesday, the ministry said. Two drones were “engaged and destroyed”, it added.

“These actions contribute to maritime security, from the Suez Canal to the Strait of Hormuz, and contribute to the defense of freedom of navigation, the objective of the EUNAVFOR ASPIDES operation launched by the European Union on February 19 under Greek command,” the French defense ministry said in a statement regarding the interceptions of drones from Yemen.

The attack came after the European Council of EU launched the maritime security operation Eunavfor Aspides to restore and safeguard freedom of navigation in the Red Sea and the Gulf.

Operation Aspides will ensure an EU naval presence in the area and will provide maritime situational awareness, accompany vessels, and protect them against possible multi-domain attacks at sea.

The operation will be active along the main sea lines of communication in the Baab al-Mandab Strait and the Strait of Hormuz, as well as international waters in the Red Sea, the Gulf of Aden, the Arabian Sea, the Gulf of Oman, and the Gulf.

The operation Commander will be commodore Vasilios Griparis, and the Force Commander will be rear admiral Stefano Costantino. The operation headquarters will be based in Larissa, Greece.