In response to Houthi missile strikes on a US ship in the Gulf of Aden, the US and the UK conducted airstrikes on Houthi sites in northern Yemen, targeting locations in five provinces, including Hodeidah. The Houthi-run al-Masirah TV reported the strikes without providing specific details.
The Houthi attack on the US ship, named 'Ginko Picardie,' was acknowledged by the US Central Command. The ship sustained slight damage but remains seaworthy and continued its voyage.
Tensions have escalated in the Red Sea region, with the Houthis intensifying their attacks since the Israel-Hamas conflict erupted on October 7, 2023. The Houthi group has controlled significant portions of northern Yemen, including the capital Sanaa and the strategic port city of Hodeidah, since the ousting of the internationally recognized Yemeni government in 2014.
Yemen's Houthi faction has claimed responsibility for launching a missile strike on a US ship in the Gulf of Aden.
In a statement aired on Wednesday by Houthi-run al-Masirah TV, Yahya Sarea, the Houthi military spokesman, attributed the attack to their support for the Palestinian people and as a response to perceived US and British aggression against Yemen. Sarea emphasized the accuracy and directness of the strike, targeting the US ship 'Ginko Picardie.'
"Our forces are committed to targeting all potential threats in the Arab Sea and the Red Sea, exercising our legitimate right to defend Yemen and stand in solidarity with the oppressed Palestinian people," he declared. Sarea warned of swift responses and consequences for any new assaults by the US and Britain.
The spokesman clarified that their military operations exclusively target Israeli vessels or those bound for Israeli ports. He asserted that these operations would persist until Israel ceases attacks and lifts the siege on the Gaza Strip.
This announcement followed the US decision on Wednesday to re-designate the Houthi group as a terrorist organization, effective in 30 days. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan justified the move, citing ongoing Houthi threats and attacks on US military forces and international maritime vessels in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden. Sullivan added that the designation could be reversed if Houthis cease their attacks.
The Houthi group had been designated a terrorist organization in January 2021 by the Trump administration, only to have the designation revoked by the Biden administration in February 2021. Responding to the latest sanction, the Houthi faction dismissed it as politically motivated and asserted that it would not deter their operations.
The Houthi attacks in the Red Sea escalated following the Israel-Hamas conflict that erupted on October 7, 2023, with the group demanding an end to Israeli attacks and the blockade on Gaza. Since 2014, the Houthis have maintained control over much of northern Yemen, including Sanaa and the strategic port city of Hodeidah, after ousting the internationally recognized Yemeni government.
(With Agency Inputs)