The attack occurred west of the Yemeni port of Hodeida and resulted in “slight damage” to the bridge windows of the vessel, as reported by the United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations of the British military. Prior to the attack, a small vessel was spotted near the targeted ship.
Ambrey, a private security firm, has identified the vessel as a Barbados-flagged cargo ship owned by the United Kingdom. Fortunately, no injuries were reported on board, with only minor damage sustained by the ship.
Brig. Gen. Yahya Saree, a military spokesperson for the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels, claimed responsibility for the attack on two separate vessels, one American and one British, within the Red Sea. However, no evidence was provided to support this claim.
One of the ships mentioned in the Houthi’s claim, named Morning Tide, matches the details provided by Ambrey. Tracking data confirms its presence in the Red Sea around the time of the reported attack.
The owner of Morning Tide, British firm Furadino Shipping, assured The Associated Press that no injuries were sustained during the attack, and the ship is en route to Singapore without any interruptions.
Rebel Attacks on Ships in the Red Sea
Since November, rebel forces have been targeting ships in the Red Sea as a response to Israel’s offensive against Hamas in Gaza. However, these attacks have not only been directed towards vessels with clear connections to Israel, but also towards those that have little or no affiliation with the country. This has resulted in a significant threat to shipping in a crucial trade route that connects Asia, the Middle East, and Europe.
Airstrikes against Houthi Missile Arsenals
To counter these attacks, the United States and the United Kingdom, along with their allies, have initiated airstrikes that focus on Houthi missile arsenals and the launch sites responsible for their attacks. This effort aims to neutralize and minimize the threat posed by the rebels.
Coordinated Strikes on Iranian-backed Militias
In recent weeks, there have been coordinated strikes against Iranian-backed militias in both Yemen and Iraq/Syria. The airstrikes carried out by the US and UK targeted 36 Houthi locations in Yemen, while separate air assaults were conducted in Iraq and Syria against other Iranian-backed militias and the Iranian Revolutionary Guard. The strikes in Iraq and Syria were conducted in retaliation for a drone strike that claimed the lives of three US troops in Jordan.
Protecting American Interests
The US military’s Central Command has confirmed that it conducted an attack on the Houthis, targeting two of their drone boats loaded with explosives. The motive behind this assault was to counter an imminent threat to US Navy ships and merchant vessels in the region. These actions aim to safeguard the freedom of navigation and create a more secure environment within international waters for US Navy vessels and merchant ships.