Sanaa, Feb 4 (EFE).- The military spokesperson for Yemen’s Houthi rebels, Yahya Sarea, said Sunday that the United States and the United Kingdom carried out 48 airstrikes against alleged positions of the pro-Iranian Shiite movement in the last few hours and warned that they will not go unpunished.
In an official statement, Yahya Saree said that the strikes will not dissuade Yemen from its moral, religious and humanitarian stance in support of the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip.
Of the 48 attacks, 13 targeted alleged positions of the Yemeni insurgents in Sanaa, 11 in the southwestern Taiz governorate, 7 in the central Al-Bayda, another 7 in the northwestern Hajjah, one in Saada and 9 in the port city of Al-Hodeidah, on the Red Sea.
On Saturday, the US Central Command (CENTCOM) confirmed a new wave of attacks by the US and the UK against the Houthis, and said that they targeted underground storage facilities, command and control, missile systems, UAV storage, operations sites, radars and helicopters.
This was the third joint US-British operation since both countries first attacked Yemen on Jan. 12 to degrade the capabilities of pro-Iranian insurgents to threaten shipping in the Red Sea.
The US has also carried out several strikes in recent weeks against missile and drone launching sites of the Houthis, who have controlled large parts of the north, center and west of the country since 2014.
The last such strike was conducted on Saturday morning, when US forces “conducted strikes in self-defense against six Houthi anti-ship cruise missiles prepared to launch against ships in the Red Sea,” CENTCOM said on X.
“US forces identified the cruise missiles in Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen and determined they presented an imminent threat to U.S. Navy ships and merchant vessels in the region,” it added.
“This action will protect freedom of navigation and make international waters safer and more secure for US Navy and merchant vessels.”
The escalation in Yemen coincides with growing tension further north, in Iraq and Syria, where on Friday the US bombed pro-Iran militia positions, in retaliation for the death of three US soldiers at the end of January in an attack by those groups against a US military base on the Syria-Jordan border.
Both the Houthis and pro-Iranian militias in Iraq say their drone and missile attacks are in solidarity with Palestinians during the Israeli assault on the Gaza Strip. EFE