On Monday evening four RAF Typhoon fighter jets took off from RAF Akrotiri, Cyprus and conducted night strikes on Houthi militant targets in Yemen using “precision guided bombs.”
The joint US and UK operation is around 10 days after British warships and a submarine attacked various sites in Yemen.
The British Defence Secretary Grant Shapps said that airstrikes were “aimed at degrading Houthi capabilities” which will “deal another blow to their limited stockpiles and ability to threaten global trade.”
The British Ministry of Defence (MoD) said that the RAF Typhoons used precision guided bombs that hit “multiple targets at two military sites in the vicinity of Sanaa airfield.”
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A top Iranian backed Houthi official warned the US and UK to “expect a response every minute” after the airstrikes overnight.
Mohammed Ali al Houthi, the head of the group’s supreme revolutionary committee, warned that their response will “inevitably be a loss and a calamity” for the US and UK.
He wrote on X, “We say to the American and the British… Trust well that every operation and every aggression against our country will not be without a response, and expect a response every minute, if not every second, then every minute it must.”
The US Central Command said that the airstrikes with the UK were supported Australia, Bahrain, Canada and the Netherlands.
U.S. Forces, Allies Conduct Joint Strikes in Yemen
As part of ongoing international efforts to respond to increased Houthi destabilizing and illegal activities in the region, on Jan. 22 at approximately 11:59 p.m. (Sanaa / Yemen time), U.S. Central Command forces alongside UK… pic.twitter.com/BQwEKZqMAo
— U.S. Central Command (@CENTCOM) January 22, 2024
CENTCOMM said the airstrikes hit areas that the Houthis use to “attack international merchant vessels and US Navy ships in the region.”
“The targets included missile systems and launchers, air defence systems, radars, and deeply buried weapons storage facilities,” they said.
“These strikes are intended to degrade Houthi capability to continue their reckless and unlawful attacks on US and UK ships as well as international commercial shipping in the Red Sea, Bab al Mandeb Strait, and the Gulf of Aden.”
In a joint statement from the US and UK, and other countries they said, “Today, the militaries of the United States and United Kingdom, at the direction of their respective governments with support from Australia, Bahrain, Canada, and the Netherlands, conducted an additional round of proportionate and necessary strikes against 8 Houthi targets in Yemen in response to the Houthis’ continued attacks against international and commercial shipping as well as naval vessels transiting the Red Sea.
“These precision strikes are intended to disrupt and degrade the capabilities that the Houthis use to threaten global trade and the lives of innocent mariners, and are in response to a series of illegal, dangerous, and destabilising Houthi actions since our coalition strikes on January 11, including anti-ship ballistic missile and unmanned aerial system attacks that struck two US-owned merchant vessels.
“Today’s strike specifically targeted a Houthi underground storage site and locations associated with the Houthis’ missile and air surveillance capabilities.
“The Houthis’ now more than thirty attacks on international and commercial vessels since mid-November constitute an international challenge.
“Recognising the broad consensus of the international community, we again acted as part of a coalition of like-minded countries committed to upholding the rules-based order, protecting freedom of navigation and international commerce, and holding the Houthis accountable for their illegal and unjustifiable attacks on mariners and commercial shipping.
“Our aim remains to de-escalate tensions and restore stability in the Red Sea, but let us reiterate our warning to Houthi leadership: we will not hesitate to defend lives and the free flow of commerce in one of the world’s most critical waterways in the face of continued threats.”