U.S. And UK Begin Bombing Yemen

Yemen Bombing

The U.S. and the UK have launched an attack on Yemen, striking the cities of Sanaa and Hodeidah, Houthi spokesman Abdulsalam Jahaf said early on Friday. Western newspapers including the New York Times also reported the attack.

Washington and London have not made any official announcements as of yet. However, multiple British and U.S. news sources reported that an attack was “imminent” on Thursday evening, citing anonymous sources inside the White House and 10 Downing Street.

“Now America, Britain, and Israel are launching raids on Hodeidah, Sanaa, Dhamar, and Saada,” Jahaf said on X (formerly Twitter). “We will discipline them, God willing.”

There were at least three explosions in Sanaa, Reuters reported citing local witnesses.

Officially known as Ansar Allah (‘Supporters of God’), the Houthis declared solidarity with Gaza in late October, reacting to Israel’s offensive against the Palestinian enclave. They have since carried out over 20 attacks on various shipping vessels in the Red Sea, a major trade route connecting Europe and Asia via the Suez Canal. Major shipping companies have responded by rerouting their ships around Africa, driving up prices and insurance costs.

On Tuesday, the U.S. Central Command announced that its ships and airplanes shot down more than 20 missiles and drones launched at vessels in the Red Sea. 

Jahaf responded to threats from Washington and London by declaring on X that the Houthis will “respond to any American aggression,” and make the U.S. “kneel and burn its battleships and all its bases and everyone who co-operates with it, no matter what the cost.”

“The world must prepare to hear America’s defeat, and I say it with all pride: We will tread on America with our feet, and whoever does not know us, the battlefields will know about our strength and strength,” Jahaf had said.

Between 2015 and 2023, the Houthis had fought to a standstill a regional coalition led by Saudi Arabia that sought to restore the previous Yemeni government to power. The US had backed the Saudis with intelligence and military supplies.

UK Threatened Yemen With Bombing

Earlier media reports said:

Britain is poised to start bombing in response to attacks on Red Sea shipping by Yemen’s Houthis, Defence Secretary Grant Shapps warned during a press conference on Wednesday.

Speaking hours after a British destroyer shot down a swarm of Houthi drones and missiles over the busy shipping lane, Shapps declared: “This cannot continue and we won’t allow it to continue.”

“We cannot have a situation where a major sea route, a major ability to move goods around the world, is being cut off by terrorists and thugs, and we therefore must act,” he continued.

“The UK alongside allies have previously made clear that these illegal attacks are completely unacceptable and if continued the Houthis will bear the consequences,” Shapps warned in a statement released alongside the press briefing. 

The UK defence secretary insisted that the Houthis were not acting alone. “Iran is guiding what is happening there in the Red Sea, providing them not just with the equipment to carry out those attacks but also often with the eyes and ears to allow those attacks to happen,” he claimed.

British destroyer HMS Diamond shot down seven of the drones in Tuesday night’s attack, according to Shapps, while three US destroyers and F-18/A planes also took down some of the projectiles. The Houthi onslaught was described as the most complex yet to be launched since the Yemeni group began targeting the Red Sea’s busy shipping lanes in response to Israel’s deadly bombardment of Gaza.

A spokesman for the Houthis said the attacks would continue “until the siege of Gaza is lifted,” explaining that Tuesday’s strike had targeted “an American ship that was providing support [to Israel]” as a “preliminary response to the treacherous attack on our naval forces by the American enemy.” 

The UN Security Council adopted a resolution on Wednesday, demanding an immediate halt to Houthi attacks on ships in the Red Sea, denouncing the strikes as an impediment to global commerce and freedom of navigation. The resolution was passed a week after the UK, U.S. and ten other countries issued an ultimatum designed as a “final warning” to the Houthis, insisting they stop their “profoundly destabilizing” attacks or “bear the responsibility of the consequences.” 

Since the start of Israel’s war against Hamas in October, the Houthis have reportedly launched at least 26 attacks in the Red Sea. While 12% of global trade previously passed through the waterway, including 30% of global container traffic, several of the world’s largest shipping companies have abandoned the direct route out of safety concerns, plotting lengthier and costlier courses around the Cape of Good Hope. Last month, the UK Treasury warned the disruption to shipping could shrink the country’s economy by 0.3%, an estimate which has since grown. 

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