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Greek-owned ship targeted by missile off Yemen — security firms

By AFP - May 24,2024 - Last updated at May 24,2024

A fighter holds a rocket propelled grenade launcher as forces loyal to the Houthi rebels in Yemen participate in a military parade on the occasion of the 34th National Day to commemorate Yemeni unity, in Sanaa, on Wednesday (AFP Photo)

DUBAI — A missile attack targeted a Greek-owned cargo vessel off Yemen on Thursday without causing any casualties or damage, maritime security agencies said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility but Yemen's Iran-backed Houthi rebels have waged a campaign of attacks against Israeli-linked shipping in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden since November in a show of support for Gaza amid the Israel-Hamas war.

The Joint Maritime Information Centre, which is run by a Western-led naval task force in the region, identified the vessel targeted in the latest attack as the Maltese-flagged bulk carrier Yannis.

Global tracking service MarineTraffic said the ship was en route from Russia to Kenya and identified its owner and operator as Greek shipping firm Eastern Mediterranean Maritime Limited.

Another bulk carrier owned by the same company, the Cyclades, was attacked by the Huthis late last month.

Maritime security firm Ambrey said the Cyclades was likely targeted "due to its listed operator's ongoing trade with Israel".

The attempted attack on the Yannis occurred 68 nautical miles off the rebel-controlled Yemeni port city of Hodeida, Ambrey said on Thursday.

“The vessel had undergone what she described as a ‘missile attack’ at the location,” it said, adding that “no injuries or damage were reported.”

The United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations, run by the Royal Navy, reported “a missile impacting the water in close proximity” to the ship.

“Vessel and all crew are safe and proceeding to next port of call,” it said in an advisory.

The rebel attacks on shipping along the vital trade route have prompted countermeasures by a Western-led naval task force and reprisal strikes on Huthi targets by British and US warplanes.

On Wednesday, US military forces shot down four drones in rebel-controlled parts of Yemen, the US Central Command (CENTCOM) said.

“It was determined these systems presented an imminent threat to US coalition forces, and merchant vessels in the region,” CENTCOM posted on social media platform X.

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