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Tuesday, April 16, 2024

US destroys 3 ships and casualties after Houthi militants’ Red Sea assault


COPENHAGEN/DUBAI/CAIRO – ⁤U.S. helicopters successfully ‍defended a ⁢Maersk container vessel in‍ the Red Sea from an attack by⁤ Iran-backed Houthi militants, resulting ‍in the sinking of three ships ​and the death of⁤ 10 militants. The naval battle, which occurred around 0330 GMT on Sunday, saw the attackers attempting to board⁣ the Singapore-flagged Maersk Hangzhou, prompting‌ the intervention of helicopters from ⁤the USS Eisenhower and ‍USS Gravely.

Maersk​ has announced a temporary pause in all sailing through the Red Sea for 48 hours following the attack, emphasizing the seriousness ​of the situation.⁣ The company’s decision reflects the potential‍ risks ⁢posed by continued hostilities in the region.

The Houthis have claimed‍ responsibility for the ⁣attack, citing the ship’s crew’s refusal to heed warning calls. This incident underscores the ​ongoing tensions in ‍the region, particularly in light of ⁣Israel’s recent ‍bombing campaign following a Hamas surprise cross-border attack on Israeli towns.

Yemen’s Houthis have ‌been targeting vessels in the ⁤Red Sea since November ⁣to show their support for ‌Hamas, prompting major shipping companies to take the longer and costlier route around Africa’s ⁢Cape of Good Hope rather than through the ‍Suez Canal. The Red Sea is ⁤the entry point for ships using the‌ Suez Canal, which handles about ⁣12% of global trade and ‍is vital for the movement of goods between Asia and Europe.

The United States launched Operation Prosperity Guardian on Dec. 19,⁣ saying more than 20 countries had​ agreed⁣ to participate in the efforts to safeguard ships⁤ in Red ​Sea waters near Yemen. However, attacks have continued, and U.S. allies have ⁢proven reluctant to commit‍ to the coalition, with nearly half not declaring their presence ⁣publicly.

Maersk, one of the world’s top cargo shippers,⁣ said on Dec. 24 it ⁤would⁤ resume sailing through the Red Sea. However, attacks​ have continued, raising concerns about ​the safety⁤ of ⁤shipping routes in the region.

The​ botched Houthi boarding‌ operation was the second⁤ attack on‌ the Maersk Hangzhou in as many days. The ship, which is carrying 14,000 containers en route from Singapore,⁤ was on Saturday hit by a ‍missile about 55 nautical miles southwest of Al‍ Hodeidah,​ Yemen.

White House national security spokesperson John‍ Kirby declined to say⁢ what options the U.S. is considering when asked on ABC’s “Good‍ Morning America” if Washington would consider a preemptive‍ strike on the Houthis. The situation remains tense, with global leaders expressing their commitment to safeguarding freedom of navigation in the Red‌ Sea.

British Defence Secretary Grant Shapps emphasized ‌the willingness to take​ direct action⁤ to deter threats to freedom of ‍navigation ‌in the Red Sea, while British Foreign Secretary David Cameron urged Iran​ to help stop‍ the Houthi attacks in the Red Sea. The ‌international ​community⁢ is closely monitoring the ⁣situation and calling‍ for diplomatic pressure on the‌ Houthis and their sponsors.

The BIMCO shipping association⁣ condemned​ the⁢ attacks and thanked those states involved in repelling them,⁤ highlighting ‍the need for continued support and collaboration to ensure the safety of ⁢shipping routes in the Red Sea.

Truth Media Network
Truth Media Network
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