US warship shoots down suspected Houthi drone in Red Sea, officials say

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(WASHINGTON) — U.S. officials confirm to ABC News that two missiles were fired from Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen toward a commercial tanker vessel in the Red Sea Wednesday, with the projectiles missing the ship.

The tanker had just entered the Red Sea on its way toward the Suez Canal, an official said.

During the incident, a U.S. warship shot down a drone launched from Yemen that was heading in its direction, the officials said.

On Monday night, an anti-ship cruise missile fired from a Houthi-controlled area of Yemen struck another commercial vessel in the Red Sea, the MT STRINDA, causing a fire, but no casualties, according to Pentagon press secretary Maj. Gen. Pat Ryder.

During an on-camera briefing Tuesday, Ryder remarked on the threat posed by Houthi attacks in the region, and efforts to start up an international maritime task force to address the problem.

“We’re continuing to take the situation in the Red Sea extremely seriously, there should be no doubt about that,” Ryder said. “The actions that we’ve seen from these Houthi forces are destabilizing, they’re dangerous, and clearly a flagrant violation of international law. And so this is an international problem that requires an international solution. We do continue to consult closely with our international allies and partners on implementing a maritime task force.”

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