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Houthi group strikes Liberian vessels in the Red Sea

Two Liberian vessels were hit by missiles in the Red Sea corridor following attacks by Yemen’s Houthi group.

A ballistic missile reportedly hit a cargo ship on Friday in the Red Sea near the strategically important Bab el-Mandeb Strait after another attack hours earlier.

At 07:00 on 15 December (Sana’a time), the Houthi group issued a warning in which the Liberian-flagged MSC ALANYA ordered the ship to turn around and head south, but after the intervention of US forces and direct communication with the ship, the ALANYA continued north.

An unmanned aerial vehicle hit the Liberian-flagged AL JASRAH, which was travelling south in the Red Sea, and caught fire.

At approximately 0900, Dec. 15 (Sanaa time), a UAV launched from Houthi held territory struck the Liberian flagged Motor Vessel AL JASRAH as it was travelling south in the Red Sea. The AL JASRAH immediately broadcast a mayday signal that said the crew was fighting a fire caused by the attack, US central command on X.

Then, at approximately 13:00 on 15 December (Sana’a time), Houthi forces launched two ballistic missiles into international shipping lanes in the Bab el-Mandeb Strait. One of the missiles struck the Liberian-flagged vessel PALATIUM 3, which transmitted a distress call and reported that the vessel was on fire.

At the beginning of the month, Yemen’s Iranian-backed Houthi rebels announced that they would attack any Israeli ship in the Red Sea, regardless of ownership. “The Yemeni Armed Forces announce that they will prevent the passage of ships heading to the Zionist entity of any nationality if they do not enter the Gaza Strip where they need food and medicine, and it will become a legitimate target for our armed forces,” Mohammed Ali al-Houthi, leader of the Houthi on X.

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