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Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Houthis Missile Hits its Mark; Oil Laden Tanker headed to China

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

May 19, 2024

An anti-ship missile reportedly fired by Houthi militants hit a Panamanian-flagged oil tanker off Yemen's Red Sea coast on Saturday, but multiple reports indicate the ship incurred minimal damage and was able to maintain course.

There were no casualties reported by the ship, U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) said in a statement posted on the X social media platform.

The strike was the latest in months of attacks on ships in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden by the Houthis, who seized control of most of Yemen's major population centers in a civil war, in opposition to Israel's war in Gaza.

The Houthis launched a single anti-ship missile at the M/T Wind, a Panamanian-flagged and Greek-owned oil tanker, at around 1 a.m. local time, causing flooding that knocked out its propulsion and steering, CENTCOM said.

A vessel of a U.S.-led maritime coalition immediately responded, but the crew was able to restore power and steering, no assistance was required and the ship "resumed its course under its own power," it said.

"This continued malign and reckless behavior by the Iranian-backed Houthis threatens regional stability and endangers the lives of mariners across the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden," CENTCOM said.

British security firm Ambrey said the attack occurred about 10 nautical miles southwest of Yemen's Red Sea port city of Mokha, and that the missile caused a fire in the steering gear compartment.

The vessel had loaded oil at the Sheskharis terminal in Russia's Black Sea port of Novorossiysk and was bound for China, Ambrey said in an advisory note.