Multiple commercial vessels attacked in Red Sea | Inquirer News

Multiple commercial vessels attacked in Red Sea

/ 06:57 AM December 04, 2023

Three commercial vessels came under attack in international waters in the southern Red Sea

FILE PHOTO: The US Navy Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Carney transits the Suez Canal, Egypt, on October 18, 2023. US Navy/Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Aaron Lau/Handout via REUTERS/File Photo

RIYADH — Three commercial vessels came under attack in international waters in the southern Red Sea, the US military said Sunday, as Yemen’s Houthi group claimed drone and missile attacks on two Israeli vessels in the area.

The Carney, an American destroyer, responded to distress calls and assisted with missile and drone launches from Houthi-controlled territory, according to US Central Command.


Yemen’s Houthi movement said its navy had attacked two Israeli ships, Unity Explorer and Number 9, with an armed drone and a naval missile. A spokesperson for the group’s military said the two ships were targeted after they rejected warnings without elaborating.


In a broadcast statement, the spokesperson said the attacks were in response to the demands of the Yemeni people and calls from Islamic nations to stand with the Palestinian people.

READ: 17 Filipinos among cargo ship crew held hostage in Red Sea

The US military said the Carney shot down three drones as it helped the commercial vessels. It was not clear if the warship was a target.

It said the attacks were a threat to international commerce.

“We also have every reason to believe that these attacks, while launched by the Houthis in Yemen, are fully enabled by Iran,” the statement said.

“The United States will consider all appropriate responses in full coordination with its international allies and partners,” it added.


An Israeli military spokesperson, Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari, said the two ships had no connection to Israel.

“One ship was significantly damaged, and it is in distress and apparently is in danger of sinking and another ship was lightly damaged,” Hagari told reporters in Tel Aviv.

READ: DFA hints at hopeful release of Filipino hostages in the Red Sea

The reported incident follows a series of attacks in Middle Eastern waters since war broke out between Israel and the Palestinian militant group Hamas on October 7.

An Israeli-linked cargo ship was seized in November by the Houthis, allies of Iran. The group, which controls most of Yemen’s Red Sea coast, had previously fired ballistic missiles and armed drones at Israel and vowed to target more Israeli vessels.

Multiple engagements

The Bahamas-flagged bulk carrier Unity Explorer is owned by Unity Explorer Ltd and managed by London-based Dao Shipping Ltd, LSEG data showed. The ship was scheduled to arrive in Singapore on December 15.

Number 9, which was headed to Suez port, is a Panama-flagged container ship owned by Number 9 Shipping Ltd and managed by Newcastle-upon-Tyne, UK-based Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement (BSM), the data showed.

BSM said in a statement to Reuters that Number 9 is currently sailing, and there were no reports of injuries or pollution after the incident. The company said a projectile hit the vessel while transiting the Bab al-Mandab Strait.

Unity Explorer’s owners and managers could not be reached immediately for comments.

READ: Yemen rebels warn they may seize more Red Sea ships

According to US Central Command, the Unity Explorer suffered minor damage, while the Number 9 also reported damage.

British maritime security company Ambrey and sources said earlier that at least two drones had hit a bulk carrier and a container ship while sailing in the Red Sea.

Ambrey said the container ship had reportedly suffered damage from a drone attack about 63 miles (101 km) northwest of the northern Yemeni port of Hodeidah.

Britain’s Maritime Trade Operations agency (UKMTO) said it had received reports of a drone attack in the Red Sea’s Bab al-Mandab Strait.

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Your subscription has been successful.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.

Last week, a US Navy warship responded to a distress call from an Israeli-managed commercial tanker in the Gulf of Aden after armed individuals had seized it.

TAGS: Houthi, Iran, Red Sea, United States

© Copyright 1997-2024 | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.