US lists Houthis as terrorists, rebels hit another America-operated ship

The US has reinstated the Houthi rebels, based in Yemen, on its list of terrorist groups following a series of aggressive actions in the Red Sea region. This move comes after the Iran-aligned militia claimed responsibility for their second attack this week on a US-operated vessel, escalating tensions in a vital maritime corridor.
Strategic waterways under threat
Recent assaults by the Houthi militia on shipping lanes since November have significantly disrupted trade routes between Asia and Europe.These actions are seen as an extension of the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestinian Hamas militants in Gaza, now surpassing three months. The Houthis have declared their actions a form of solidarity with the Palestinians, threatening to broaden their target scope to include US ships in retaliation for American and British military interventions.
Direct hits and defiant statements
In a bold proclamation of resistance, the Houthi movement confirmed a “direct hit” on the US Genco Picardy bulk carrier using missiles. This attack, which marked the second against a US-affiliated vessel this week, resulted in minor damage and no crew injuries, according to Genco. However, the Houthi military spokesperson, Yahya Sarea, issued a stern warning, emphasizing their readiness to defend Yemen and support the Palestinian cause against perceived threats in the Red and Arabian seas.
Continued aggression despite global repercussions
The repeated attacks in the Red Sea are not just a regional concern but a global economic threat, disrupting one of the world’s most crucial trade arteries. Shipping giants like Maersk are rerouting vessels, causing a significant bottleneck in global supply chains and spurring fears of lasting inflationary pressures. This disruption is vividly illustrated by the doubling of freight rates and soaring war risk premiums for Red Sea shipments.
International responses and calls for action
In response to the maritime security crisis, countries like Italy are urging the European Union to establish a maritime security mission to safeguard these waters. Meanwhile, the US military has launched consecutive missile strikes against Houthi-controlled sites in Yemen, aiming to cripple the group’s capabilities. However, the Houthis continue their maritime harassment, undeterred by the US’s recent re-designation of the group as a global terrorist entity aimed at severing their financial and armament supplies.
As the conflict unfolds, the international community remains watchful, recognizing the far-reaching implications of this standoff on global trade, security, and regional stability. The situation remains fluid, with each party firm in their stance, seeking leverage in a high-stakes geopolitical chess game.
(With inputs from agencies) Source

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