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Houthis say they attacked bulk carrier in Gulf of Aden

Iran-backed Houthi militants said Thursday that they attacked another commercial vessel transiting the Gulf of Aden. File Photo by Yahya Arhab/EPA-EFE
Iran-backed Houthi militants said Thursday that they attacked another commercial vessel transiting the Gulf of Aden. File Photo by Yahya Arhab/EPA-EFE

Feb. 15 (UPI) -- Houthi rebels in Yemen said they struck a British supermax bulk carrier transiting the Gulf of Aden on Thursday, the latest attack by the Iran proxy militia amid Israel's war in Gaza.

Its naval forces attacked the Barbados-flagged Lycavitos carrier with "appropriate naval missiles," the militia said in a statement.

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"The strikes were direct."

The announcement came as the United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations reported an attack about 85 nautical miles east of Aden, Yemen. It said an unidentified ship reported an explosion nearby.

"The crew and the vessel are reported safe and the vessel is proceeding to its next port of call," the incident report said. "Vessels are advised to transit with caution and report any suspicious activity to UKMTO."

The Lycavitos is operated by Helikon Shipping, which was established in London in 1961, and also has offices in Athens, and Dalian, China. UPI has contacted Helikon for comment and confirmation.

According to the company's website, the Lycavitos was built in 2007 and has a deadweight tonnage of 58,786.

Since Nov. 19, the Houthis have attacked some 30 vessels transiting the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, stating the strikes are in solidarity with the Palestinian people amid Israel's war against Hamas, another Iran proxy militia, in Gaza.

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The United States and Britain, along with other democratic allies, have responded with retaliatory strikes on Houthi targets in areas of Yemen under the rebels' control.

The Biden administration said the retaliatory strikes seek to deter further Houthi attacks and degrade the militia's ability to launch them.

The attack on Thursday, however, followed the Houthis striking the Iran-bound Greek bulk grain carrier Star Iris on Monday.

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