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Australia to up its response for Red Sea stability

Attacks by Houthis rebels on ships in the Red Sea have upset global trade and raised shipping rates.

Attacks by Houthis rebels on ships in the Red Sea have upset global trade and raised shipping rates. Photo: AP

Australia will send an extra six Australian Defence Force personnel to support the US and UK in their strikes against Houthi rebels in Yemen.

Defence force personnel were involved in missile strikes launched by the US and UK in response to the Iran-backed group blockading international shipping lanes in the Red Sea in support of Palestine.

Defence Minister Richard Marles on Thursday announced Australia’s extra support for the operation.

“It’s an important contribution and certainly one which is welcomed by the US and the UK,” he told ABC News Breakfast.

“It’s important that Australia is flying its flag that it is participating in this effort to protect international shipping in the Red Sea.”

The commitment under Operation Hydranth is separate to the up to 16 defence personnel deployed to support the Combined Maritime Forces in Bahrain, under Operation Manitou.

The troops will be sent to the headquarters supporting the strikes on targets in Yemen.

The US has been carrying out near-daily strikes against the Iran-linked Houthis, who control the most populous parts of Yemen and have said their attacks on shipping are in solidarity with Palestinians as Israel strikes Gaza, Reuters reports.

The strikes have so far failed to halt the Houthis’ attacks, which have upset global trade and raised shipping rates.

The Houthis said this week they would only reconsider their missile and drone attacks on international shipping in the Red Sea once Israel ends its “aggression” in the Gaza Strip.

– AAP

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