US and UK air strikes hit Yemen, Houthi-run TV reports

Attacks target Hodeidah’s airport and region north of Sanaa, Al Masirah TV says, as Houthis continue Red Sea attacks.

A Royal Air Force Typhoon FGR4 takes off to carry out air strikes against Houthi military targets
A UK Typhoon FGR4 combat aircraft takes off to carry out air strikes against Houthi military targets in Yemen [File: AS1 Leah Jones/Ministry of Defence/AP]

The United States and United Kingdom have carried out six air strikes against targets in Yemen, a Houthi-run television station reports, as the Yemeni group targets shipping lanes in the Red Sea.

Four attacks targeted on the airport of Hodeidah, a main port city on the Red Sea, and the seaport of Salif north of it, Al Masirah TV said. Two air raids also hit the Al-Thawra region north of the Yemeni capital, Sanaa, according to the news outlet.

There were no immediate reports of casualties, and the US and UK militaries have not confirmed the attacks. Friday’s strikes follow US and UK attacks on Hodeidah province that the Houthis said killed 16 people last week.

The Houthis, who control Sanaa and present themselves as the official Yemeni armed forces, have been attacking shipping lanes in the Red Sea and firing missiles and drones at Israeli targets for months in a show of support for Palestinians in Gaza.

Later on Friday, the Houthis said they attacked two ships headed to Israel in the Red Sea with drones and missiles.

The Yemeni group’s operations have angered the US and other Western nations. The US and its allies have been bombing Houthi targets in Yemen since January, but the military campaign has not deterred Houthi attacks.

The US military regularly announces interceptions of Houthi attacks. On Thursday, it said it destroyed eight Houthi drones launched over the Red Sea.

That same day, the Yemeni group said it launched two joint military operations with the Islamic Resistance in Iraq against ships at the Israeli port of Haifa in response to the “massacres of the Israeli enemy in Rafah” in the southern Gaza Strip.

More than 36,700 people have been killed in Israel’s war on Gaza since October 7.

Houthi leader Abdul Malik al-Houthi said the group’s operations against Israel with the Islamic Resistance in Iraq, a coalition of Iran-backed Iraqi armed groups, would intensify.

The Houthi, US and UK attacks have raised fears of an expansion of the conflict in Gaza as well as concerns over efforts to end Yemen’s own civil war. Since 2014, the Houthis have been battling forces loyal to the internationally recognised government, backed by Saudi Arabia.

A fragile truce has been in place since 2022.

According to a Bloomberg News report published on Thursday, Washington is looking to block major parts of a United Nations peace plan that the warring parties in Yemen adopted in December unless the Houthis cease their attacks on international shipping.

Source: Al Jazeera and news agencies