Published On: Sun, Feb 4th, 2024

US military thwarts Houthi missile threat escalating tensions in Middle East | World | News

The US military operating off the coast of Yemen successfully intercepted and destroyed a Houthi cruise missile in a move that prevented its launch against ships in the Red Sea but will potentially escalate the existing conflict in the region.

The operation, labelled a “self-defence strike” by the US Central Command, took place at around 4 am local time, thwarting the missile just before it could be deployed.

The US Central Command justified the action, stating that the cruise missile was identified in Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen, posing an “imminent threat to US Navy ships and merchant vessels in the region.”

The command emphasized that the operation aimed to safeguard “freedom of navigation” and enhance the security of international waters.

This incident follows closely on the heels of coordinated strikes by the US and UK targeting 36 Houthi locations in Yemen.

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Hussein al-Mosawi, spokesperson for Harakat al-Nujaba, an Iranian-backed militia in Iraq, said the US “must understand that every action elicits a reaction.” He added: “We do not wish to escalate or widen regional tensions.”

Mosawi claimed that the targeted sites in Iraq were “devoid of fighters and military personnel at the time of the attack.”

The Iraqi government condemned the strikes as a violation of sovereignty, while the US maintains that it informed Iraq before initiating the assault.

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