Defense ministry sources in Athens on Friday hastily dismissed same-day media reports claiming that up to 17 Hellenic Navy officers and NCOs tendered their resignation or retirement requests rather than be assigned to a frigate set to participate in the US-led military mission to respond to Houthi attacks on shipping in the Red Sea.

The same sources said the number of navy personnel requesting retirement this month, as cited in the media reports, is inflated and unrelated to the participation of the HN frigate “Hydra” in operation “Prosperity Guardian”.

The press reports also generated reactions by political parties, with main opposition SYRIZA’s defense sector head, retired admiral and state deputy Evangelos Apostolakis, saying the leftist party has from the very first moment stressed that the Hydra’s participation in the Red Sea mission “entails a heightened risk due to the particular conditions that exist in the area of operations”.