UAE-flagged ship seized by Yemen’s Houthi rebels in Red Sea

An official of the Saudi-leb Arab Military Coalition has confirmed that a UAE-flagged cargo vessel has been hijacked by the Iran-backed Houthi militia operating out of northern Yemen.

Speaking to Saudi state media, coalition spokesman Brigadier General Turki al-Maliki said the unidentified vessel was underway in the Red Sea and headed for the Saudi port of Jizan when it was seized off Hodeidah in Yemen in the late evening (local time) of Saturday, January 1.

The coalition claimed the vessel was carrying hospital equipment.

Al-Maliki called for the immediate release of the ship and its crew. Otherwise, coalition military forces will “take all necessary measures and procedures,” including the use of force, to resolve the crisis.

A Houthi spokesman refuted the Saudis’ claim that the vessel was carrying hospital equipment and said that the vessel instead had military equipment on board when it was seized.

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