An American cargo ship was hit by a missile fired by the Houthis off the coast of Yemen on Monday, the day after the rebels attacked an American destroyer in the southern Red Sea.
“At approximately 4 p.m. (8 a.m. Quebec GMT), Iranian-backed Houthi militants fired an anti-ship ballistic missile […] and hit the M/V Gibraltar Eagle, a US-owned Marshall Islands-flagged cargo ship,” the US Middle East Command (Centcom) said.
“The ship has not reported any injuries or significant damage and is continuing its journey,” he added.
According to the British Maritime Safety Agency (UKMTO), the ship “was hit from above by a missile” southeast of the Yemeni city of Aden.
The Houthi rebels, who control large swaths of Yemen, have increased attacks in recent weeks against ships they suspect of being linked to Israel, disrupting maritime traffic in this essential area for global trade. They claim to be acting in solidarity with the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, where Israel and Hamas have been at war since October 7.
According to British maritime risk company Ambrey, the ship hit off the coast of Aden was heading towards the Suez Canal.
He is not linked to Israel, Ambrey affirmed, estimating that he was targeted because of his affiliation, “in response to American military strikes against Houthi positions in Yemen”.
The rebels have not yet claimed responsibility for the attack but a Houthi military source told AFP that “three missiles (had) been fired” from different regions in the center and south of the country, without commenting on their targets.
The US military said it had “shot down, earlier today, an anti-ship ballistic missile fired in the direction of shipping lanes in the southern Red Sea”, which fell on Yemeni territory.
In response to the increase in attacks in the Red Sea, American and British forces carried out raids on Friday against Houthi positions, who carried out new attacks despite these strikes.
On Sunday, the US military announced it had shot down a cruise missile targeting a US destroyer operating in the southern Red Sea.