A United States fighter aircraft shot down an anti-ship cruise missile Sunday that was fired from Yemen by the Iran-backed Houthis toward a U.S. destroyer located in the Red Sea.
U.S. Central Command announced Sunday’s Houthi incident in a statement released on X. The anti-ship cruise missile attack marks the first reported Houthi attack since the United States and its allies conducted joint strikes against Houthi targets on Thursday due to the group’s repeated attacks on commercial vessels in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden since the start of the war between Israel and Hamas in October.
“On Jan. 14 at approximately 4:45 p.m. (Sanaa time), an anti-ship cruise missile was fired from Iranian-backed Houthi militant areas of Yemen toward USS Laboon (DDG 58), which was operating in the Southern Red Sea,” Central Command stated. “The missile was shot down in vicinity of the coast of Hudaydah by U.S. fighter aircraft. There were no injuries or damage reported.”
According to Stars and Stripes, the Houthis did not immediately confirm Sunday’s attack in the Red Sea. Additionally, the United States has not yet announced whether it will take retaliatory action against the Houthi over the most recent incident.
Sunday’s missile attack came just one day after the United States targeted a Houthi radar site located in Yemen.
A statement released by Central Command noted, “At 3:45 a.m. (Sana’a time) on Jan 13., U.S. forces conducted a strike against a Houthi radar site in Yemen. This strike was conducted by the USS Carney (DDG 64) using Tomahawk Land Attack Missiles and was a follow-on action on a specific military target associated with strikes taken on Jan. 12 designed to degrade the Houthi’s ability to attack maritime vessels, including commercial vessels.”
Prior to Saturday’s attack, the United States and its allies executed strikes against over 60 Houthi targets on Thursday. The strikes included missiles and bombs launched by multiple aircraft, warships, and a submarine.
“These targeted strikes are a clear message that the United States and our partners will not tolerate attacks on our personnel or allow hostile actors to imperil freedom of navigation in one of the world’s most critical commercial routes,” President Joe Biden said in a statement released by the White House. “I will not hesitate to direct further measures to protect our people and the free flow of international commerce as necessary.”