Houthis in Yemen Assert Assault On UK Oil Carrier In Aden Gulf

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Yemen Rebel Group Announces Attack on British Oil Tanker

On Friday, Yemen’s Huthi rebels, supported by Iran, claimed responsibility for a missile attack on a British oil tanker, the Marlin Luanda. The attack occurred in the Gulf of Aden and caused the vessel to catch fire. According to the Huthis, this latest assault continues their persistent offensive on international shipping. These updates come directly from the news arm of Reader Wall.

Parallel Events

On the same day, the Huthis reportedly fired a missile at a US warship. This action appears to be part of their support for Palestinians in the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict. The missile was successfully intercepted and neutralised by the US military with no reported casualties or damage.

In their effort to deter the Huthis’ attacks on maritime trade vessels traversing the significant Red Sea route, US and British forces have executed two series of coordinated strikes. Despite these measures and additional unilateral US air raids, the Huthis assert that they will maintain their aggression.

Missile Strike Details

Yahya Saree, a military spokesperson for the Huthis, stated that the Marlin Luanda was struck by missiles from Yemeni naval forces. The direct hit led to the tanker’s combustion. According to risk monitor Ambrey, a missile strike southeast of Yemen’s Aden port ignited a merchant ship. However, the crew were said to be safe at the time of the report.

Potential Global Impact

These incidents contribute to an ongoing disruption of global trade. Ambrey noted that a Panama-flagged oil tanker reported observing two explosions in the Gulf of Aden. The British navy’s United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations corroborated this account, though no damage was reported in this instance.

The Huthis initiated their attacks on Red Sea shipping in last November, stating that they targeted Israeli-affiliated vessels in solidarity with Gaza’s Palestinians. They have since deemed US and British interests to be valid targets, too.

In response to the maritime threats posed by the Huthis, the US is spearheading a coalition to safeguard Red Sea shipping. The Pentagon likened their efforts to a proverbial highway patrol for the waterway. They are also striving to exert diplomatic and financial pressure on the Huthis, even redesignating them last week as a terrorist organisation.

The disruptive actions by the Huthis, who oppose Israel and the West and align with Iranian proxies, have disturbed Red Sea trade and affected approximately 12 percent of international maritime traffic. Resulting from these disturbances, several shipping firms have opted for the pricier and longer route around South Africa’s Cape of Good Hope. This comes at a time when the industry is already dealing with the aftereffects of the COVID-19 pandemic, which saw freight rates soar due to disruptions in supply chains.

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