Home west asia Houthis Shoot Down US Drone, Strike Six Ships In Three Seas

Houthis Shoot Down US Drone, Strike Six Ships In Three Seas

The Houthis say their attacks are acts of solidarity with Palestinians in Israel's war in Gaza.
Houthi attacks
File Photo: Houthi military spokesperson Yahya Sarea chants slogans after delivering a statement on the group's latest attacks, in Sanaa, Yemen May 24, 2024. (Khaled Abdullah/ REUTERS)

DUBAI: Yemen’s Houthis said they had downed a US drone and launched attacks at six ships in three different seas.

The Iran aligned group said the  MQ-9 drone was shot down in Yemen’s southeastern province of Maareb on Wednesday.

According to Houthi military spokesman Yahya Sarea, this drone “is the sixth UAV that has been shot down so far”.

In a televised address, he said the ships attacked include:

• Marshall Islands-flagged bulk carrier Laax, damaged in a missile strike off the coast of Yemen Tuesday,
Morea and SeaLady in the Red Sea,
Alba and Maersk Hartford in the Arabian Sea and
Minerva Antonia in the Mediterranean.

The Laax, carrying a cargo of grain, was hit by five missiles fired from Yemen.

“The vessel has sustained damage, (but) she is not taking water, she is not tilting and there are no wounded onboard,” the ship’s security company LSS-SAPU told Reuters. “She is proceeding to her destination with a normal speed.”

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The LSS-SAPU evacuated the crew from the Rubymar, which sank after a Houthi missile hit it earlier this year.  A spokesperson for the outfit said the Laax’s Greece-based owner had no connection with Israel or the United States.

The vessel was headed for Bandar Imam Khomeini in Iran.

The Houthis say their attacks are acts of solidarity with Palestinians in Israel’s war in Gaza. Their main targets are ships sailing towards Israeli ports.

The group has managed to sink one ship, the Rubymar, seized another vessel, and killed two crew members.

They’ve also disrupted global shipping by forcing vessels to avoid the nearby Suez Canal and reroute trade around Africa.

In retaliation, the US and UK have launched over 450 strikes against Houthi military sites in Yemen, leaving at least 40 dead and over 35 injured as of May 2.

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In a career spanning over three decades and counting, I’ve been the Foreign Editor of The Telegraph, Outlook Magazine and The New Indian Express. I helped set up rediff.com’s editorial operations in San Jose and New York, helmed sify.com, and was the founder editor of India.com.

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