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Iranian-backed Houthi terror militia strikes Norwegian-owned vessel on the Red Sea

Norwegian vessel STRINDA (Photo: OSINTdefender)

The Houthis, an Iranian-backed Yemenite terror militia, struck the Norwegian vessel STRINDA with an anti-ship cruise missile in the Bab-el-Mandeb strait in the Red Sea, the United States Central Command (CENTCOM) reported on Monday.

"The [motor tanker] STRINDA reported damage causing a fire on-board, but no casualties at this time," the CENTCOM said in an official statement. The U.S. military added that "there were no U.S. ships in the vicinity at the time of the attack, but the USS MASON responded to the STRINDA's mayday call and is currently rendering assistance."

The Bab-el-Mandeb, also known as the 'Gate of Grief,' is a strategic naval link between the Indian Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea via the Red Sea and the Suez Canal.

Houthi military spokesperson Yahya Saree confirmed that the terror group had fired the missile at the Norwegian vessel after its crew reportedly ignored warnings from the Houthis. However, the Norwegian vessel was in international waters on its way with chemicals to Israel's Ashdod port and was reportedly not obliged to respond to Houthi demands.

The Houthis have dramatically stepped up their maritime terror activities in the Red Sea region since the terror group Hamas invaded and massacred over 1,200 Israelis on Oct. 7. The increased Houthi terror activities in the Red Sea have prompted many Israeli and Israeli-bound vessels to use the significantly longer route around Africa to reduce exposure to the ongoing Houthi terror threats. However, these maritime reroutes have resulted in a dramatic rise in transportation costs.

In late October, Israel's Arrow 3 aerial defense system successfully intercepted a long-range ballistic missile that the Houthis fired from Yemen at the southern Israeli Red Sea city of Eilat.

“The detection systems of the Air Force followed the trajectory of the missile and intercepted it at the most suitable operational time and location,” the Israeli army stated at the time.

The latest missile attack against the Norwegian ship comes after the Houthis had threatened to block and target international vessels heading to Israeli ports until food and medical assistance could reach the Gaza Strip.

However, Israel has greenlighted the continuous inflow of humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip, despite the risk it could end up at the hands of the Hamas regime.

Israel recently released video footage showing Hamas members stealing international humanitarian aid, as well as beating up Gazan civilians.

While Hamas was once popular in Gaza, there is growing anger among Gazans who increasingly blame the Hamas regime for the ongoing destruction during the war with Israel.

One Gazan resident who fled to the southern part of the coastal enclave was heard cursing Hamas leadership during an interview with the local Radio Alam.

“I have a message for the Hamas government: 'Go to hell; may God curse you, dogs,'” he said.

“Deif is hiding underground, Sinwar - if you hear us, we can’t find water,” the angry Gazan resident added.

The Hamas terror group in Gaza, the Houthis in Yemen and Hezbollah terror forces in Lebanon are all Iranian terror proxies that Tehran uses as a political and military tool to implement its aggressive policies against Israel and moderate Arab states across the Middle East region and beyond.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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