The Pentagon reported that a U.S. warship and other commercial vessels were reportedly under attack in the Red Sea on Sunday.
“We’re aware of reports regarding attacks on the USS Carney and commercial vessels in the Red Sea and will provide information as it becomes available,” the Pentagon reported.
A U.S. official, who remained anonymous to discuss intelligence matters, said that the attack began about 10 a.m. in Sanaa, Yemen, and had gone on for as much as five hours. Another U.S. official who also wished to remain anonymous for the same reason said that the USS Carney had intercepted at least one drone during the attack.
A White House official reported that there were no injuries or damage to the USS Carney.
Yemen’s Houthi rebel military spokesman Brig. Gen. Yahya Saree claimed responsibility for the attacks, saying that the first vessel was hit by a missile and the second by a drone while in the Bab el-Mandeb Strait that links the Red Sea to the Gulf of Aden. He described the ships as allegedly ignoring warnings from Houthi officials prior to the attack.
Saree did not mention any U.S. warship being involved in the attack.
BREAKING: An American warship and multiple commercial ships are under attack in the Red Sea according to the Pentagon.
The warship is reportedly the USS Carney.
“We’re aware of reports regarding attacks on the USS Carney and commercial vessels in the Red Sea and will provide… pic.twitter.com/56vET2NENR
— Collin Rugg (@CollinRugg) December 3, 2023
The attack potentially marked a major escalation in a series of maritime attacks in the Middle East linked to the Israel-Hamas war. Yemen, a Palestinian ally, reportedly warned Israeli ships from the area.
“The Yemeni armed forces continue to prevent Israeli ships from navigating the Red Sea (and Gulf of Aden) until the Israeli aggression against our steadfast brothers in the Gaza Strip stops,” Saree said. “The Yemeni armed forces renew their warning to all Israeli ships or those associated with Israelis that they will become a legitimate target if they violate what is stated in this statement.”
In early November, the Houthis seized a vehicle transport ship also linked to Israel in the Red Sea off Yemen. The rebels still have the vessel near the port city of Hodeida. Missiles also landed near another U.S. warship last week after it assisted a vessel belonging to Israel that had briefly been seized by gunmen.
While in office, former President Donald Trump designated the Houthis as a terrorist organization, but the Biden administration reversed it.