• UPDATE: US Warship/Commercial Vessels Attacked By Drones/Missiles In Red Sea

    December 3, 2023
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    UPDATE - US Central Command Statement

    Today, there were four attacks against three separate commercial vessels operating in international waters in the southern Red Sea. These three vessels are connected to 14 separate nations. The Arleigh-Burke Class destroyer USS CARNEY responded to the distress calls from the ships and provided assistance.

    At approximately 9:15 a.m. Sanaa time, the CARNEY detected an anti-ship ballistic missile attack fired from Houthi controlled areas of Yemen toward the M/V UNITY EXPLORER, impacting in the vicinity of the vessel. UNITY EXPLORER is a Bahamas flagged, U.K. owned and operated, bulk cargo ship crewed by sailors from two nations. The CARNEY was conducting a patrol in the Red Sea and detected the attack on the UNITY EXPLORER.

    At approximately 12 p.m., and while in international waters, CARNEY engaged and shot down a UAV launched from Houthi controlled areas in Yemen. The drone was headed toward CARNEY although its specific target is not clear. We cannot assess at this time whether the Carney was a target of the UAVs. There was no damage to the U.S. vessel or injuries to personnel.

    In a separate attack at approximately 12:35 p.m., UNITY EXPLORER reported they were struck by a missile fired from Houthi controlled areas in Yemen. CARNEY responded to the distress call. While assisting with the damage assessment, CARNEY detected another inbound UAV, destroying the drone with no damage or injuries on the CARNEY or UNITY EXPLORER. UNITY EXPLORER reports minor damage from the missile strike.

    At approximately 3:30 p.m. the M/V NUMBER 9 was struck by a missile fired from Houthi controlled areas in Yemen while operating international shipping lanes in the Red Sea. The Panamanian flagged, Bermuda and U.K. owned and operated, bulk carrier reported damage and no casualties.

    At approximately 4:30 p.m., the M/V SOPHIE II, sent a distress call stating they were struck by a missile. CARNEY again responded to the distress call and reported no significant damage. While en route to render support, CARNEY shot down a UAV headed in its direction. SOPHIE II is a Panamanian flagged bulk carrier, crewed by sailors from eight countries.

    These attacks represent a direct threat to international commerce and maritime security. They have jeopardized the lives of international crews representing multiple countries around the world. We also have every reason to believe that these attacks, while launched by the Houthis in Yemen, are fully enabled by Iran. The United States will consider all appropriate responses in full coordination with its international allies and partners.


    The Pentagon is confirming a US warship and commercial vessels were attacked in the Red Sea today. The escalation is unfortunate but predictable after the suspicious nature of the start of the Gaza War. Many have been suspecting there is a push for a wider conflict in the region.

    “We’re aware of reports regarding attacks on the USS Carney and commercial vessels in the Red Sea and will provide information as it becomes available,” the Pentagon said, reported AP.

    The British military earlier said there had been a suspected drone attack and explosions in the Red Sea, without elaborating.

    The Pentagon did not identify where it believed the fire came from. However, Yemen’s Houthi rebels have been launching a series of attacks on vessels in the Red Sea, as well as launching drones and missiles targeting Israel as it wages war against Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

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