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Yemen rebels say they attacked Israeli ships in Red Sea

The Pentagon says a US warship and several commercial ships have come under attack in the Red Sea.


USS Carney in the Mediterranean Sea on Oct. 23, 2018. The USS Carney, a Navy destroyer, on Thursday, Oct. 19, 2023, took out three missiles that had been fired from Yemen and were heading north, U.S. officials said. Image AAP

The Pentagon says it is aware of reports regarding attacks on a US warship and commercial vessels in the Red Sea as Yemen's Houthi group claimed drone and missile attacks on two Israeli vessels in the area.


"We're aware of reports regarding attacks on the USS Carney and commercial vessels in the Red Sea and will provide information as it becomes available," the Pentagon said.


Yemen's Houthi movement said its navy had attacked two Israeli ships, Unity Explorer and Number Nine, with an armed drone and a naval missile.


A representative 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 Muslim countries to stand with the Palestinian people.


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 last month 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.


US broadcaster ABC News, citing a US official, said the USS Carney had been involved in multiple engagements involving Houthi attacks on commercial vessels.


"In at least two circumstances, the Carney successfully shot down (drones) headed in its direction," the official said


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


Ambrey said the container ship had reportedly suffered damage from a drone attack about 100km northwest of the northern Yemeni port of Hodeidah.


The UK Maritime Trade Operations agency (UKMTO) said it had received reports of a drone attack in the Red Sea's Bab al-Mandab strait.


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


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