Houthis capture UAE vessel off Yemen

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Yemen’s Houthi militias hijacked a UAE-flagged cargo ship off the coast of Al Hudaydah Governorate on Sunday, the Coalition Forces announced…reports Asian Lite News

“At (23:57) on Sunday (2nd January 2022), the Cargo Ship (RWABEE) sailing under the flag of the United Arab Emirates was targeted through ‘piracy and hijacking’ while sailing off the coast of Al Hudaydah Governorate,” the official spokesperson of the Coalition to Restore Legitimacy in Yemen, Brigadier General Turki Al Malki, said.

Houthis capture UAE vessel off Yemen

The ship was conducting a maritime mission from the Island of (Socotra) to (Jazan) Port. It was carrying medical field equipment, that were used to operate the Saudi Field Hospital in the Island. The Field Hospital has concluded its mission following the establishment of a hospital on the Island.

Al Malki added that the ship’s field hospital equipment cargo includes ambulances, medical equipment, communication devices, tents, a field kitchen, field laundry units and technical and security support equipment.

“This act of Piracy by the terrorist Houthi militia is a credible threat that highlights the danger of the terrorist Houthi militia on the freedom of navigation and international trade in the South Red Sea and Bab Al-Mandab Strait.

“The terrorist Houthi militia will bear full responsibility as a result of its criminal act of Piracy against the ship, which violates the customary International Humanitarian Law, the San Remo Manual on Armed Conflicts at Sea and the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

“The militia must promptly release the ship, or the Coalition Forces will undertake all necessary measures and procedures to handle this violation, including the use of force if necessary,” the spokesperson concluded.

Meanwhile, Jordan has condemned the seizure of a cargo ship by Houthi militia. “The Jordanian Foreign Ministry strongly condemns the act of piracy and the Houthis capturing the vessel under the flag of the fraternal UAE, sailing last night in the vicinity of Al Hudaydah governorate,” the foreign ministry said in a statement.

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The ministry called such actions “terror threatening the freedom of civil navigation” and demanded the immediate release of the captured vessel.

Yemen has been gripped by the conflict between the government forces led by President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi and the Houthi Ansar Allah movement for years. The situation was further complicated after Saudi Arabia joined the conflict on the side of Yemen’s government in 2015, launching air, land and sea operations against the Islamist rebel movement.

Since February 2020, Houthis have been carrying out a large-scale operation against the Yemeni army in Marib to gain control over the province, which is also a political, military, and economic centre. (with inputs from ANI/Sputnik)