November 29, 2023 | The Jerusalem Post

Houthis slam G7, say hijacked ship linked to war

The Houthis also used drones, ballistic missiles, and cruise missiles to threaten Eilat and areas around the Red Sea.
November 29, 2023 | The Jerusalem Post

Houthis slam G7, say hijacked ship linked to war

The Houthis also used drones, ballistic missiles, and cruise missiles to threaten Eilat and areas around the Red Sea.

The Iranian-backed Houthis slammed the G7 on Wednesday and said that the Galaxy Leader ship the Houthis hijacked on November 19 is being held due to the war in Gaza.

Foreign ministers from the G7 countries had emphasized the importance of maritime security after the hijacking. A statement by the group this week said that “we call on all parties not to threaten or interfere with lawful exercise of navigational rights and freedoms by all vessels.” The group also said “we especially call on the Houthis to immediately cease attacks on civilians and threats to international shipping lanes and commercial vessels and release the M/V Galaxy Leader and its crew, illegally seized from international waters on November 19.”

The G7 includes Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The Houthis slammed the statement. A spokesman for the group in Yemen said it was supporting Hamas and other Iranian-backed “resistance” in confronting Israel. The official Houthi slogan is “death to America, death to Israel, curse the Jews.”

The spokesman for the Houthi movement and head of the Sanaa negotiating delegation, Muhammad Abdel Salam, commented on the statement of the G7, according to the pro-Iran Al-Mayadeen media. Al-Masirah media in Yemen, which is run by the Houthi noted that they have put out statements on Telegram affirming their continued decision to target ships they claim are linked to Israel.The Houthi statement says they are committed to “protecting the waters” around Yemen. “The ship and its crew were detained in solidarity with the Palestinian people, and in support of their valiant resistance in Gaza,” the Houthis said.

The Iran-backed group says it is linking the ship to the conflict in Gaza and seeking to serve the goals of the “resistance” in Gaza in confronting Israel. The Houthis have threatened over the last several weeks to target ships they say are linked to Israel. This has led to navigational warnings. One ship was also struck by a drone, and two ballistic missiles were fired toward the USS Mason this week.

Attacks by the Houthis

The Houthis also used drones, ballistic missiles, and cruise missiles to threaten Eilat and areas around the Red Sea. US naval warships the USS Carney and USS Thomas Hudner have intercepted Houthi threats since October 7.

The report at Al-Mayadeen says that the Houthis vow to continue to “carry out military operations against the ships and interests of the Israeli enemy, until its aggression against Gaza stops and its crimes against the Palestinian people stop.” Iran-backed groups such as Hezbollah have appeared to stop their attacks on Israel since the pause in fighting began in Gaza on Friday, November 24. The Houthis have not indicated if they are abiding by a similar Iranian-backed decision.

Seth Frantzman is the author of Drone Wars: Pioneers, Killing Machine, Artificial Intelligence and the Battle for the Future (Bombardier 2021) and an adjunct fellow at The Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

Issues:

Iran Iran Global Threat Network Iran-backed Terrorism Israel Israel at War Military and Political Power