Houthis Say Seized UAE Vessel Had Military Equipment on Board
12:27 GMT 03.01.2022 (Updated: 16:50 GMT 03.01.2022)
© MOHAMMED HUWAISNewly recruited Houthi fighters chant slogans as they ride a military vehicle during a gathering in the capital Sanaa to mobilize more fighters to battlefronts to fight pro-government forces in several Yemeni cities, on January 3, 2017.
© MOHAMMED HUWAIS
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The Houthi movement of northern Yemen claimed on Monday that the captured UAE-flagged vessel was transporting military equipment.
Houthi military spokesman Yahya Saree made a statement on Twitter.
1-The Yemeni armed forces are seizing an Emirati military cargo ship with military equipment on board that entered Yemeni waters without any license and engaged in hostilities targeting the security and stability of the Yemeni people.— Yahya Sare'e (@Yahya_Saree) January 3, 2022
During a press conference broadcast by the Houthi-run al-Masirah TV channel, the spokesman said that rebel forces had monitored the ship for weeks, then decided to take it and send it to the port of Salif.
Earlier in the day, the Arab coalition announced that the rebels hijacked a ship sailing under the flag of the United Arab Emirates off the Yemeni coast in the southern Red Sea. The vessel was said to be carrying medical equipment.
"At (23:57) on Sunday (02 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. (RWABEE) was conducting a maritime mission from the Island of (Socotra) to (Jazan) Port," Arab coalition spokesman Turki Al-Maliki said, quoted by Saudi news agency SPA.
The coalition spokesman demanded the rebels immediately leave the ship and threatened that in the event of disobedience, the coalition would be forced to take retaliatory measures, including the use of force.
Yemen has been gripped by a conflict between government forces led by President Hadi and the Houthi Ansar Allah movement for seven years. The situation in the country 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.