Als Merkposten: Am (heutigen) frühen Freitagmorgen gibt es zunehmend Meldungen, die USA und Großbritannien planten Angriffe auf die Huthi-Milizen in Jemen – als Reaktion auf deren anhaltende Angriffe auf Handelsschiffe im Roten Meer. (Lege das als Sammler an und aktualisiere den Eintrag)
Zunächst gab es dazu nichts Belastbares. Die ausführlichste Meldung bislang kam am Donnerstagabend von der Londoner Times, hier wiedergegeben von Reuters:
Britain is expected to join the United States in conducting air strikes on military positions belonging to the Iran-backed Houthis in Yemen „within hours“, the political editor for the Times newspaper reported on Thursday.
British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s Downing Street office did not respond to a request from Reuters for comment, while the Pentagon and the White House each declined to comment on the report. (…)
Sunak briefed his cabinet of ministers on the imminent military intervention earlier on Thursday, the Times said.
Die Angaben aus den USA waren noch etwas knapper:
NEW: The Biden administration has told leaders in Congress there will be US-UK airstrikes in Yemen tonight, per a US official.
— Akbar Shahid Ahmed (@AkbarSAhmed) January 11, 2024
Von der Pentagon-Korrespondentin der Voice of America:
#BREAKING 2 US officials tell me US, UK now striking #Iran-backed #Houthis targets inside #Yemen in response to their attacks on ships in #RedSea & #GulfofAden – more than a dozen targets ranging from training facilities to drone storage facilities
— Carla Babb (@CarlaBabbVOA) January 11, 2024
Update von Reuters (die Zeitangabe Donnerstag bezieht sich auf die USA, in Europa gegen 0100 Uhr):
The United States and Britain have started carrying out strikes against targets linked to Houthis in Yemen, four U.S. officials told Reuters on Thursday, the first time strikes have been launched against the Iran-backed group since it started targeting international shipping in the Red Sea late last year. (…)
The officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said a formal statement was soon expected to detail the strikes.
Mehr Details von der New York Times:
The United States and a handful of its allies on Thursday carried out military strikes against more than a dozen targets in Yemen controlled by the Iranian-backed Houthi militia, U.S. officials said, in an expansion of the war in the Middle East that the Biden administration had sought to avoid for three months. (…)
Britain joined the United States in the strikes against the Houthi targets, the U.S. officials said, as strike aircraft from bases in the region and the aircraft carrier Dwight D. Eisenhower bombed targets. A Navy submarine fired Tomahawk cruise missiles, the officials said. (…)
The American-led strikes on Thursday hit radars, missiles and drone launch sites, and weapons storage areas, according to a U.S. official, who said President Biden had approved the retaliatory assault.
Kurz nach 01.30 MEZ das Statement von US-Präsident Joe Biden:
Statement from President Joe Biden on Coalition Strikes in Houthi-Controlled Areas in Yemen
Today, at my direction, U.S. military forces—together with the United Kingdom and with support from Australia, Bahrain, Canada, and the Netherlands—successfully conducted strikes against a number of targets in Yemen used by Houthi rebels to endanger freedom of navigation in one of the world’s most vital waterways.
These strikes are in direct response to unprecedented Houthi attacks against international maritime vessels in the Red Sea—including the use of anti-ship ballistic missiles for the first time in history. These attacks have endangered U.S. personnel, civilian mariners, and our partners, jeopardized trade, and threatened freedom of navigation. More than 50 nations have been affected in 27 attacks on international commercial shipping. Crews from more than 20 countries have been threatened or taken hostage in acts of piracy. More than 2,000 ships have been forced to divert thousands of miles to avoid the Red Sea—which can cause weeks of delays in product shipping times. And on January 9, Houthis launched their largest attack to date—directly targeting American ships.
The response of the international community to these reckless attacks has been united and resolute. Last month, the United States launched Operation Prosperity Guardian—a coalition of more than 20 nations committed to defending international shipping and deterring Houthi attacks in the Red Sea. We also joined more than 40 nations in condemning Houthi threats. Last week, together with 13 allies and partners, we issued an unequivocal warning that Houthi rebels would bear the consequences if their attacks did not cease. And yesterday, the United Nations Security Council passed a resolution demanding the Houthis end attacks on merchant and commercial vessels.
Today’s defensive action follows this extensive diplomatic campaign and Houthi rebels’ escalating attacks against commercial vessels. These targeted strikes are a clear message that the United States and our partners will not tolerate attacks on our personnel or allow hostile actors to imperil freedom of navigation in one of the world’s most critical commercial routes. I will not hesitate to direct further measures to protect our people and the free flow of international commerce as necessary.
PM statement on strikes against Houthi military targets: 12 January 2024
The Royal Air Force has carried out targeted strikes against military facilities used by Houthi rebels in Yemen.
In recent months, the Houthi militia have carried out a series of dangerous and destabilising attacks against commercial shipping in the Red Sea, threatening UK and other international ships, causing major disruption to a vital trade route and driving up commodity prices. Their reckless actions are risking lives at sea and exacerbating the humanitarian crisis in Yemen.
Despite the repeated warnings from the international community, the Houthis have continued to carry out attacks in the Red Sea, including against UK and US warships just this week.
This cannot stand. The United Kingdom will always stand up for freedom of navigation and the free flow of trade. We have therefore taken limited, necessary and proportionate action in self-defence, alongside the United States with non-operational support from the Netherlands, Canada and Bahrain against targets tied to these attacks, to degrade Houthi military capabilities and protect global shipping.
The Royal Navy continues to patrol the Red Sea as part of the multinational Operation Prosperity Guardian to deter further Houthi aggression, and we urge them to cease their attacks and take steps to de-escalate.
Die Pressemitteilung des britischen Verteidigungsministeriums:
Air strikes against Houthi military targets in Yemen
On 11 January, Royal Air Force aircraft joined coalition forces in striking a number of facilities used by the Houthi rebel faction in Yemen to attack shipping in the southern Red Sea.
The Royal Navy destroyer HMS Diamond has already been active alongside US and French warships in defending vital international shipping lanes against Houthi drones and missiles. Given the persistence of the Houthis in threatening merchant ships, several of which have already suffered damage, and the deliberate targeting of HMS Diamond and US Navy vessels on 9 January, coalition forces identified key facilities involved in these attacks, and agreed to conduct a carefully coordinated strike to reduce the Houthis’ capability to violate international law in this manner.
Four RAF Typhoon FGR4s, supported by a Voyager air refuelling tanker therefore used Paveway IV guided bombs to conduct precision strikes on two of these Houthi facilities. One was a site at Bani in north-western Yemen used to launch reconnaissance and attack drones. A number of buildings involved in drone operations were targeted by our aircraft.
The other location struck by our aircraft was the airfield at Abbs. Intelligence has shown that it has been used to launch both cruise missiles and drones over the Red Sea. Several key targets at the airfield were identified and prosecuted by our aircraft.
In planning the strikes, particular care was taken to minimise any risks to civilians, and any such risks were mitigated further by the decision to conduct the strikes during the night. The detailed results of the strikes are being assessed, but early indications are that the Houthis’ ability to threaten merchant shipping has taken a blow, and our commitment to protecting the sea-lanes, through which some 15% of the world’s shipping passes and which is vital to the global economy, has been amply demonstrated.
Die Bundesregierung äußerte sich (bislang) nicht direkt, beteiligte sich aber an einer gemeinsamen Erklärung zu den Luftangriffen:
A Joint Statement from the Governments of the United States, Australia, Bahrain, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Republic of Korea, Singapore, and the United Kingdom
Recognizing the broad consensus as expressed by 44 countries around the world on December 19, 2023, as well as the statement by the UN Security Council on December 1, 2023, condemning Houthi attacks against commercial vessels transiting the Red Sea, and in light of ongoing attacks, including a significant escalation over the past week targeting commercial vessels, with missiles, small boats, and attempted hijackings,
We hereby reiterate the following and warn the Houthis against further attacks:
Ongoing Houthi attacks in the Red Sea are illegal, unacceptable, and profoundly destabilizing. There is no lawful justification for intentionally targeting civilian shipping and naval vessels. Attacks on vessels, including commercial vessels, using unmanned aerial vehicles, small boats, and missiles, including the first use of anti-ship ballistic missiles against such vessels, are a direct threat to the freedom of navigation that serves as the bedrock of global trade in one of the world’s most critical waterways.
These attacks threaten innocent lives from all over the world and constitute a significant international problem that demands collective action. Nearly 15 percent of global seaborne trade passes through the Red Sea, including 8 percent of global grain trade, 12 percent of seaborne-traded oil and 8 percent of the world’s liquefied natural gas trade. International shipping companies continue to reroute their vessels around the Cape of Good Hope, adding significant cost and weeks of delay to the delivery of goods, and ultimately jeopardizing the movement of critical food, fuel, and humanitarian assistance throughout the world.
Let our message now be clear: we call for the immediate end of these illegal attacks and release of unlawfully detained vessels and crews. The Houthis will bear the responsibility of the consequences should they continue to threaten lives, the global economy, and free flow of commerce in the region’s critical waterways. We remain committed to the international rules-based order and are determined to hold malign actors accountable for unlawful seizures and attacks.