Monday off the coast of Yemen, an American cargo ship was struck by a missile launched by Iranian-backed Houthi militants, according to U.S. military officials.
The ship, the Gibraltar Eagle, sustained minor damage but is still seaworthy and is scheduled to depart the region, as reported by Eagle Bulk Shipping, the ship’s Connecticut-based owner.
The missile struck the Gibraltar Eagle as it approached the Suez Canal via the Gulf of Aden in the Red Sea, approximately 110 miles southeast of the Yemeni city of Aden, according to the Associated Press.
“All seafarers onboard the vessel are confirmed to be uninjured,” Eagle Bulk Shipping said. “The vessel is carrying a cargo of steel products. Eagle Bulk management is in close contact with all relevant authorities concerning this matter.”
As of Monday afternoon, the Houthis had not claimed responsibility for the attack on the Gibraltar Eagle; however, the United States Central Command assigned culpability to the group and verified that the missile originated from Yemen.
Another missile, according to U.S. Central Command, was launched but failed to impact on the ground in Yemen.
On Jan. 15 at approximately 4 p.m. (Sanaa time), Iranian-backed Houthi militants fired an anti-ship ballistic missile from Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen and struck the M/V Gibraltar Eagle, a Marshall Islands-flagged, U.S.-owned and operated container ship. The ship has… pic.twitter.com/gixEMaUiVT
— U.S. Central Command (@CENTCOM) January 15, 2024
The U.S. Maritime Administration issued an advisory to American ships warning of “a high degree of risk to commercial vessels” traveling near Yemen.
“While the decision to transit remains at the discretion of individual vessels and companies, it is recommended that U.S. flag and U.S.-owned commercial vessels” stay away from the area “until further notice,” the notice said.
The assault on an American civilian vessel on Monday occurred one day subsequent to a missile being launched at an American military ship by Houthi insurgents operating in Yemen.
The target of the projectile, the USS Laboon, was not affected, and there were no reported injuries or damage.
The U.S. military targeted Houthi militants in Yemen last week in retaliation for the organization’s continued assaults on commercial vessels.
Additionally, in recent months, the Houthis have launched missiles towards Israel as the nation combats Islamic terrorism in the wake of the Hamas assaults on October 7.