Australia Refuses to Send Warships to Red Sea

( – Australia’s Defense Minister Richard Marles announced on December 21 that the Oceanian nation formally declined a United States request to send warships to the Red Sea to help it in the U.S. Operation Prosperity Guardian. Marles said during a press conference that the region is not a strategic priority for Australia.

According to different reports, the Biden administration wanted Australia to be part of the operation to guard trade after the attacks perpetrated by Yemeni Houthi terrorists. White House officials have said that restoring order in the Red Sea is one of the main priorities of US President Joe Biden on foreign policy.

In the press conference, Marles told reporters that Canberra is mainly focused on Asia-Pacific matters as it has always been the area where Australia has its “most important strategic interests.” Despite the refusal to send any military plane or surface ship to the Middle East, the defense minister said that the government of Prime Minister Anthony Albanese promised to help the United States by sending 11 soldiers.

On December 20, US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin announced the Prosperity Guardian multinational operation, whose main goal is to prevent more Houthi terrorist attacks against commercial vessels that navigate the Red Sea. Following the war declared by the Israeli government against the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas, the Shiite Yemeni group has represented a threat to international trade and has even attacked some US bases in the region.

Following Lloyd’s declarations, the Houthi rebels published a statement saying that they wouldn’t stop their terrorist attacks against commercial vessels in the Red Sea. In a tweet, the main Houthi leader Mohammed Al-Bukhaiti said that the terrorist group remains committed to its defense of Palestinians and its anti-western stance, no matter “the sacrifices” and even if the United States mobilizes “the entire world.”

In a statement, shipping juggernaut Kuehne and Nagel said that what the Houthis are doing is “dangerous” as 10 percent of seaborne oil, eight percent of liquefied natural gas, and 30 percent of worldwide container traffic pass through the region.

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