U.S. Shoots Down Another 17 Houthi Drones And Missiles Over Red Sea, Military Says

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U.S. forces in the Red Sea shot down a total of 17 drones and missiles fired by Houthi rebels in Yemen on Tuesday, according to the military’s Central Command—one week after starting an operation to protect shipping in the Middle East from rising tensions.

The military shot down a total of 12 one-way attack drones, three anti-ship missiles and two land attack cruise missiles for 10 hours beginning at 6:30 a.m. local time, the U.S. military said in a news release.

U.S. Navy destroyer the USS Laboon and multiple F/A-18 Super Hornet fighter jets participated in the fighting on Tuesday.

The Navy reported no injuries and no damage to any ships engaged in combat, CENTCOM said.

The Houthis claimed responsibility for missile attacks against a Mediterranean Shipping Company vessel around 12:25 p.m. local time, Reuters reported, but it is unclear if the missiles were any of the ones shot down by U.S. forces.

The cargo ship, which the company identified as the MSC UNITED VIII, alerted coalition forces and conducted evasive maneuvers, MSC said in a news release, and no injuries were reported.

The Houthis are a militia group that controls much of north Yemen, including the capital of Sana’a. Both the Houthis and Hamas—which launched a deadly attack on Israel from the Gaza Strip on Oct. 7—are backed by Iran. After the outbreak of the Israel-Hamas war, the Houthis began a campaign of missile and drone strikes against ships with purported links to Israel in the Red Sea—an important trade lane and route to the Suez Canal that sees an estimated 10-15% of all global shipping traffic. The U.S. responded by launching Operation Prosperity Guardian last week. The operation, which includes coalition forces from nine countries across Europe, the Middle East and North America, is intended to act as a “highway patrol” force in the sea—protecting cargo ships and other vessels in the Red Sea and the nearby Suez Canal.

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