On the 14th June, a UAE coalition warship was hit by a missile as it left Mokha port in the Yemen southern Red Sea. The attack was claimed by the Houthi rebels and it has since been reported by the coalition that there was minimal damage to the ship and that one crew member was injured.
Video footage released by Houthi media shows the attack occurred during hours of darkness and that there was a significant explosion on the warship.
Houthi rebels successfully hit UAE supply ship HSV-2 Swift in October 2016 and targeted US warships repeatedly. In response, the US destroyed a number of fixed radar stations ashore, thought to have been used for target identification. The successful attack on the 14th June demonstrates that the Houthi’s retain the capability to accurately launch missiles from shore to sea. It should be noted that all missile attacks to date during the Yemen civil war have been directed at military targets, not commercial vessels. However, the risk of mistargeting or collateral damage remains.
CMF’s Statement to industry recently highlighted the terrorist threat in the BAM and equally a moderate threat of piracy exists, both of which are directed towards merchant vessels.
MAST reiterates the advice for vessels to register with MSC HOA, report to UKMTO in the VRA/HRA, maintain vigilant watches, proceed at best speed, maintain the maximum distance from the Yemen coast as the TSS allows and enforce BMP 4 measures. Where a vessel is unable to adhere to BMP 4 measures, armed guards are advised.
Security and Risk Report 24/05/23
MAST’s security report issue 370 is available to read now. In the UK, there have again been a series of court appearances related to terrorism