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Monday, June 17, 2024

US & UK Warships Down At Least 14 Houthi Drones In Red Sea

Capping off a week which saw daily attacks and threats on commercial shipping in the Red Sea, US and coalition warships have once again intervened against inbound Houthi projectiles.

US Central Command announced Saturday that its guided-missile destroyer shot down 14 drones launched by the Houthis in a fresh attack.

A British warship was also involved in staving off attacks, with UK defence secretary Grant Shapps stating: “Overnight, HMS Diamond shot down a suspected attack drone which was targeting merchant shipping in the Red Sea. One Sea Viper missile was fired and successfully destroyed the target.”

Illustrative image: Shutterstock


“The ship recently arrived in the region to bolster international efforts to maintain maritime security,” he added.

“The recent spate of illegal attacks represent a direct threat to international commerce and maritime security in the Red Sea. The UK remains committed to repelling these attacks to protect the free flow of global trade.”

Friday saw two Liberia-flagged vessels suffer missile and drone damage. Currently, the USS Eisenhower aircraft carrier is getting closer to the Middle East while traversing the Mediterranean, after earlier this month and last being in the Persian Gulf. 

The latest US statement detailed the following incident: “In the early morning hours of 16 December the US Arliegh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Carney (DDG 64), operating in the Red Sea, successfully engaged 14 unmanned aerial systems launched as a drone wave from Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen,” according to CENTCOM.

“The UAS were assessed to be one-way attack drones and were shot down with no damage to ships in the area or reported injuries. Regional Red Sea partners were alerted to the threat,” it added.

Germany-based Hapag-Lloyd has joined Denmark’s Maersk liner in halting all its Red Sea container ship traffic until at least Monday, following a Houthi attack on one of its vessels. “Hapag-Lloyd is interrupting all container ship traffic across the Red Sea until Monday,” Hapag-Lloyd confirmed in a statement.

Via AP

Iran is meanwhile warning against a Western naval coalition in the Red Sea. But already US and other warships have increased their presence in regional waters, with the US Navy especially directly engaging Houthi projectiles. The incidents are becoming more frequent, even daily. The Western coalition and Houthis are headed for a likely major showdown.

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