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Iranian warship dispatched to Red Sea as Houthi continue attacks of international vessels

Illustrative - An Iranian warship takes part in a joint naval military drill between Iran, Russia, and China in the Gulf of Oman, Iran, in this picture obtained by Reuters on March 17, 2023. (Photo: Iranian Army/WANA/Handout via REUTERS)

The Islamic Republic of Iran has dispatched its Alborz warship to the Red Sea via the strategically important Bab el-Mandeb strait, Iran's state-controlled Tasnim news agency reported on Monday. Tehran’s latest move comes as its terror proxy in Yemen, the Houthis, continues attacking international commercial vessels in the Red Sea region.

“The Alborz destroyer entered the Red Sea… by passing through the Bab el-Mandeb,” Tasnim stated.

The Houthi aggression is reportedly motivated by support for the terror organization Hamas, which launched a war against the Jewish state on Oct. 7, when it invaded and massacred over 1,200 Israelis. While the Houthis have played a limited role in the ongoing conflict between Hamas and Israel, their actions have had a significant impact on the security of international shipping vessels in the Red Sea. This has adversely affected the transportation of goods between Asia and the European market.

Tehran officially claimed it has sent its naval assets to the Red Sea “to secure shipping lanes, repel pirates, among other purposes since 2009.” However, the Iranian regime has, in practice, undermined the security of shipping lanes and encouraged piracy through its financial and military support of the Houthi terrorist militia.

On Sunday, the U.S. military eliminated three Houthi terror boats after they attacked the Danish-owned Maersk Hangzhou commercial container ship in the Red Sea. About 10 Houthi crew members were killed in the confrontation with the American naval forces.

“The US Navy helicopters returned fire in self-defense, sinking three of the four small boats, and killing the crews. The fourth boat fled the area. There was no damage to US personnel or equipment,” the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) stated.

In December, the U.S. announced the establishment of an international task force, Operation Prosperity Guardian, to deal with the growing Houthi terror threat in the Red Sea. At the time, U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin stressed that the Houthi threat constituted a challenge for the entire international community as some 12% of all international trade passes through the Red Sea.

“This is an international challenge that demands collective action,” Austin stated.

Western powers hold the Iranian regime responsible for Houthi militia terror attacks. British Foreign Secretary David Cameron and Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian reportedly discussed the security challenges in the Red Sea region on Sunday.

“I made clear that Iran shares responsibility for preventing these attacks,” Cameron said, referring to the Iranian regime’s “long-standing support” for the Houthis.

Iran’s top diplomat reportedly responded by accusing the West of applying “double standards” and claiming the “Israeli regime cannot be allowed… to set the region on fire,” a reference to the ongoing war in Gaza.

Iranian-backed terror organization Hamas started the war when it invaded southern Israel, massacred over 1,200 Israelis and kidnapped around 240 Israelis and foreign nationals on Oct. 7.

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

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