Houthis claim strike on 'Israel-bound' Norwegian ship

Rebels launched cruise missile and hit the Strinda in the Red Sea

Houthi rebels claimed responsibility for a missile strike on the Norwegian-flagged tanker MT Strinda. AFP
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Yemen's Houthis have claimed responsibility for a strike on the Norwegian ship Strinda, which they say was carrying oil to Israel.

"It was targeted with a naval missile," Houthi military spokesman Yahya Saree said in a televised statement on Tuesday.

He said the group would continue its quest of preventing Israeli ships from travelling across the Red Sea off the coast of Yemen.

The US military's Central Command said on Tuesday that an anti-ship cruise missile was "launched from the Houthi-controlled area of Yemen", hitting the Strinda.

“There were no US ships in the vicinity at the time of the attack but the USS Mason responded … and is currently rendering assistance,” it said.

The Mason is an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, one of the US Navy's most powerful ships.

Geir Belsnes, chief executive of the Strinda's operator, said all crew members were safe.

“The vessel is now proceeding to a safe port,” he added.

On Monday, Iran's Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian denied armed groups in Iran and Lebanon are proxies of Tehran but said Iran would support them in their actions against Israel.

“We clearly threatened or actually, allow me to correct, gave warnings that if the attacks against women and children [in Gaza] continue, then the region will enter a bigger war," he said on Monday at the Doha Forum.

The Houthis have intensified their attacks on commercial ships in the Red Sea in a bid to hinder the flow of traffic there and disrupt maritime security.

Last week the US military said three ships were targeted in the southern Red Sea.

Updated: December 14, 2023, 4:48 AM