Mohammed Huwais/AFP

Suspected Houthi attack causes fire onboard ship off Aden


Thu, 13-06-2024 08:57 PM, Aden

Aden (South24) 

The United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations (UKMTO) said on Thursday that a fire broke out onboard a merchant vessel 98 nautical miles east of Aden, South Yemen, after it was hit by two unknown projectiles.

Separately, British maritime security firm, Ambrey, reported that a vessel had issued a distress call reporting the impact of a missile about 129 nautical miles east of Aden.

Ambrey said the ship was “enroute from Malaysia to Venice, Italy,” adding that the ship was “compatible with the Houthi target profile,” without elaborating.

Later on Thursday, the UKMTO reported a possible second attack when an explosion occurred close to a ship 82 nautical miles northwest of Hodeidah in the Red Sea.

UKMTO said the explosion did not cause damage and all crew were reported safe.

Based on the patterns of escalation in recent months, and the style and locations of the attacks, it is likely the Iranian-backed Yemeni Houthi militia is behind them.

The Houthis did not immediately claim responsibility for the attacks, but are expected to do so in the coming hours.

The latest incidents come one day after the Greek cargo ship, Tutor, in the Red Sea, was hit by a small vessel and from the air, causing water to leak into its engine room.

Related: Boat attack hits cargo ship off Hodeidah in Red Sea 

The Houthis claimed responsibility for yesterday’s attack, saying it was carried out using a drone boat, in addition to drones and ballistic missiles.

During yesterday’s statement, they also announced the implementation of two joint operations with the Iraqi militia against Israeli targets in Ashdod and Haifa using cruise missiles and drones.

Related: Houthis claim Israeli port Haifa attack with Iraqi group 

Today, Thursday, Houthi leader Abdulmalik Al-Houthi bragged about the damage to the Tutor ship, claiming that it was still taking on water and would soon sink.

If such an outcome were to happen, Tutor would be the second ship to sink as a result of Houthi attacks after the British ship Rubymar, which sank on March 2 in the Red Sea days after a Houthi missile attack.

During the speech, broadcast on Al-Masirah TV, Al-Houthi also announced that the number of military and commercial ships targeted by his militia had reached 145 ships since November 2023.

Related: ‘South24 Center’ Exclusive Survey: Houthis Attacked 125 Ships in Four Seas 

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YemenHouthisRed SeaMaritimeAmbreyUKMTOMissileDroneShips