The bridge of the UK warship HMS Diamond, as Sea Viper missiles are fired from the Red Sea on targets inside Yemen, January 12, 2024 (UK Ministry of Defence)

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The US military has launched more strikes on positions of Houthi rebels in Yemen.

Fired from the warship USS Carney early Saturday, missiles targeted a radar site.

The Houthis’ media channel said earlier that the Al-Dailami airbase in the capital of Sanaa was hit.

The director of the US Joint Staff, Lt. Gen. Douglas Sims, said on Friday that Houthis had launched an anti-ship ballistic missile in retaliation for American and British strikes on 30 locations the previous night.

The missile was reportedly fired 90 nautical miles south-east of Aden in Yemen. It landed 400 to 500 meters short of a ship and no damage was reported.

The British maritime security company Ambrey claimed the Houthis, in three small craft, mistakenly fired on a tanker believed to be carrying Russian oil in the Gulf of Aden.

The Houthi Supreme Political Council said “all American-British interests have become legitimate targets”. Deputy Foreign Minister Hussein al-Ezzi declared the US and UK must “prepare to pay a heavy price”.


The US Air Force says it struck more than “60 targets at 16 Iranian-backed Houthi militant locations, including command and control nodes, munitions depots, launching systems, production facilities, and air defense radar systems”.

More than 100 precision-guided munitions of various types were fired from warplanes and warships, according to the statement.


Responding to attacks on shipping in the Red Sea, the US and UK have struck Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthi insurgents.

US President Joe Biden said on Thursday night that the US and UK bombing and missile strikes were carried out with support from Australia, Bahrain, Canada, and the Netherlands.

About a dozen sites in Yemen were targeted with ship-launched Tomahawk cruise missiles and by fighter jets from the US Navy, US Air Force, and Royal Air Force.

Britain’s Ministry of Defence said four RAF Typhoon fighters struck two targets in northwest Yemen: the airfield at Abbs, a launch site for cruise missiles and drones, and a site at Bani used for reconnaissance and attack drones.

The Houthis, formally known as Ansar Allah, claimed “American-Zionist-British aggression against Yemen” in raids on the capital, Sana’a, the port city of Hodeidah, and the cities of Saada and Dhamar.

Ansar Allah said it responded with attacks on western warships. However, a senior US military official said, “As of right now, we have not seen any direct retaliatory action directed towards our US or other coalition members.”

The Houthis, a Shia Islamist organization formed in the 1990s, took control of much of Yemen — including Sana’a — in 2015. Iran declared the insurgency to be part of the “Axis of Resistance”, which also included Palestine’s Hamas and Lebanon’s Hezbollah.

Ansar Allah has carried out strikes with Iran-designed missiles and drones for years, including on Saudi oil installations. These escalated from October 7 following Hamas’ mass killings inside Israel and the Israeli mass killings across Gaza.

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The US military says the Houthis have targeted shipping in the southern Red Sea area in 27 attacks in the past 97 days. About 15% of the world’s seaborne trade passes through the Suez Canal to the north, but more than 2,000 vessels have been diverted around Africa’s Cape of Good Hope.

Early Wednesday, 21 cruise missiles, rockets, and drones were fired on US and UK warships. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, on a tour of the Middle East, said, “I’m not going to telegraph or preview anything that might happen. All I can tell you again, we’ve made clear … that if this continues, as it did yesterday, there will be consequences.”

“Direct Response to Unprecendented Attacks”

Biden said in his statement on Thursday night:

These strikes are in direct response to unprecedented Houthi attacks against international maritime vessels in the Red Sea – including the use of anti-ship ballistic missiles for the first time in history.

These attacks have endangered US personnel, civilian mariners, and our partners, jeopardised trade, and threatened freedom of navigation….

I will not hesitate to direct further measures to protect our people and the free flow of international commerce as necessary.

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said, “We have…taken limited, necessary and proportionate action in self-defence, alongside the United States against targets tied to these attacks, to degrade Houthi military capabilities and protect global shipping.”