Britain Prepares to Take ‘Direct Action’ Against Houthis in Yemen

Fact checked by The People's Voice Community
UK prepares for air strikes against Houth rebels

Britain is reportedly drawing up plans with the US for potential military strikes against the Iranian-backed Houthis in Yemen

Defence Secretary Grant Shappsaid that Britain “won’t hesitate” to take “direct action” against Houthis as the UK military prepares to launch strikes to protect the key shipping lane in the Red Sea.

The rebel group has declared support for Hamas and has said that it targets ships travelling to Israel.

Brietbart reports: Attacks on global shipping passing through the Red Sea by Islamist terrorists are being felt in the West as delays mount and the cost of imports rise to cover soaring insurance costs and the United Kingdom is preparing to join the United States in launching direct strikes, it is claimed. UK newspaper of record The Times reports the country is preparing to launch airstrikes in Yemen with the U.S., and while “no decisions have yet been made”, “planning is underway”, a spokesman is reported to have said.

Iran-backed Houthis, who are a faction of Shiite Islamist fighters in Yemen, have been attacking ships in an increasingly determined way since Hamas launched its deadly terror attack against Israel last year. While the attacks were initially portrayed as being targeted against Israeli shipping, dozens of strikes later they appear to be more broadly anti-Western, with many ships attacked being linked to the United Kingdom.

Houthis have also attempted to get directly involved with the Hamas-Israel war, launching ballistic missiles.

The British Defence Secretary Grant Shapps noted insurance premiums paid by commercial ships attempting to transit the Red Sea — an important strategic waterway that cuts over a week off the voyage of a vessel carrying goods or oil from the East to Europe or the American East Coast — had increased “tenfold since early December”. These costs, and the risk of losing a ship to attack are sufficiently great that many of the world’s largest carriers are now avoiding the area altogether, piling on costs and delays to global trade.

Writing in The Daily Telegraph on Monday, Shapps said because of the seriousness of the situation and the risk of “miscalculation and escalation” from allowing Houthi strikes to continue unchallenged, Western retaliatory strikes may be on the horizon. He wrote:

We need to stand firm with our allies… we are willing to take direct action, and we won’t hesitate to take further action to deter threats to freedom of navigation in the Red Sea.

The Houthis should be under no misunderstanding: we are committed to holding malign actors accountable for unlawful seizures and attacks.

Shapps emphasised that a precedent risked being set: the Red Sea isn’t the only critical maritime chokepoint worldwide, and a sign of weakness here could imperil Western seaborne trade elsewhere.

A British government spokesman cited by The Times underlined that work was going on behind the scenes for these apparently pending strikes against land targets in Yemen. They are reported to have said: “Houthi attacks are unacceptable and destabilising. As you would expect, while planning is underway for a range of scenarios, no decisions have yet been made and we continue to pursue all diplomatic routes.”

Niamh Harris
About Niamh Harris 15176 Articles
I am an alternative health practitioner interested in helping others reach their maximum potential.