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BRATISLAVA – The Slovak Republic will send up to five members of the Slovak Armed Forces to the EUNAVFOR Aspides operation headquarters in Greece. The deployment of soldiers was approved by the National Council (NC) of the Slovak Republic on Wednesday. The aim of the operation is to ensure maritime security and freedom of navigation in connection with the crisis in the Red Sea.

“The operation was established in response to the growing number of security incidents, including attacks, arbitrary or illegally detained and seized civilian and commercial vessels by the Houthi movement, which endanger maritime security in the Red Sea region, the Gulf of Aden, the Arabian Sea, and the Persian Gulf,” explained the Ministry of Defense. The strategic task of the operation is to escort and protect civilian and commercial vessels and to enhance and maintain situational awareness in cooperation with like-minded maritime security providers.

The Slovak Republic contributes to the financing of the operation through contributions to the European Peace Facility. The deployment of Slovak soldiers in the operation has been approved by the parliament until the end of the operation’s mandate. (June 12)