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Red Sea Crisis

Houthis target Chinese tanker in Red Sea

US Navy USS Carney
Guided-missile destroyer USS Carney (DDG-64) operating in the Red Sea, Oct. 19, 2023.
A missile attack on a Chinese-owned, Chinese-operated oil tanker on March 23 caused damage and a fire onboard.

The incident comes within days of reports that the Houthis had agreed with China and Russia to allow for the safe passage of their ships through the region.

According to a report from US Central Command, the last of five missiles fired at oil tanker Huang Pu in the early hours of March 23 found its target, leading the ship’s crew to issue a distress call. Assistance was not requested, the vessel suffered minimal damage and a fire onboard was extinguished within 30 minutes said the update.

UKMTO reported the incident as occurring 23NM west of Mukha, with the ship and crew safe and continuing to the next port of call.

“The Houthis attacked the MV Huang despite previously stating they would not attack Chinese vessels,” said US Central Command on Twitter.

Later the same morning, US forces engaged six Houthi unmanned aerial vehicles in the Southern Red Sea which were deemed a threat to US forces and merchant shipping. Five of the UAVs crashed into the sea and one returned to Houthi controlled land in Yemen.