update deskMiddle East

US Navy destroyer downs suicide drones, missile in Red Sea

The ship and its crew were unharmed.

The USS Carney destroyer in Odessa Port during the Sea Breeze international exercise, July 5, 2019. Photo by Volodymyr Vorobiov/Shutterstock.
The USS Carney destroyer in Odessa Port during the Sea Breeze international exercise, July 5, 2019. Photo by Volodymyr Vorobiov/Shutterstock.

A U.S. Navy destroyer in the Red Sea shot down several suicide drones and an anti-ship ballistic missile fired towards it by Houthis in Yemen, AP reported on Wednesday.

The attack apparently targeted the “USS Carney,” an Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer that has been leading efforts to thwart Houthi aggression against commercial vessels transiting the Red Sea.

There were no injuries or damage to the ship, U.S. Central Command announced on X, noting that the attack posed an “imminent threat to merchant vessels and to the U.S. Navy ships in the region.”

The Houthi movement’s “military” spokesperson, Yahya Saree, acknowledged the assault on Wednesday, claiming that the Iranian terrorist proxy had targeted two American warships in the Red Sea.

The Houthis “will not stop until the aggression is stopped and the siege on the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip is lifted,” Saree said.

In response to the attack, U.S. forces “destroyed three anti-ship missiles and three unmanned surface vessels (USV) in self-defense,” CENTCOM said. The targets were located in Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen.

In December, the U.S. launched a multinational force to counter the maritime threat posed by the Houthis, who have repeatedly targeted vessels passing through the crucial Bab el-Mandeb strait.

The Israeli Navy also bolstered its presence in the Red Sea in response to the attacks.

Since Hamas’s Oct. 7 massacre, Houthis have fired several missile and drones against the Jewish state, that were thwarted by Israeli, U.S. or Saudi forces or missed their targets.

On Feb. 22, Israel’s Arrow defense system intercepted a ballistic missile over the Red Sea bound for Eilat. The missile did not enter Israeli territory and did not pose a threat to civilians, the IDF said.

The Houthi’s official slogan is “Death to America, Death to Israel, Curse the Jews, Victory to Islam.”

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