Houthis say 'don't want to expand' Red Sea attacks but warns Israel | World News - Hindustan Times
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Houthis say 'don't want to expand' Red Sea attacks but warns Israel

Jan 19, 2024 06:19 PM IST

Houthis Red Sea attacks: Houthi spokesman said, “We do not want the escalation to expand. This is not our demand.”

Yemen's Houthis said that will not expand their attacks on shipping in and around the Red Sea except blocking Israel and responding to United States and Britain for air strikes. Spokesman Mohammed Abdulsalam- chief Houthi negotiator in peace talks- told news agency Reuters that the group does not intend to target Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

Houthis Red Sea attacks: Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Carney (DDG 64) defeating a combination of Houthi missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles in the Red Sea.(AFP)
Houthis Red Sea attacks: Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Carney (DDG 64) defeating a combination of Houthi missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles in the Red Sea.(AFP)

"We do not want the escalation to expand. This is not our demand. We imposed rules of engagement in which not a single drop of blood was shed or major material losses," Mohammed Abdulsalam said, adding, "It represented pressure on Israel only, it did not represent pressure on any country in the world."

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Houthis have attacked ships in the Red Sea since October in a show of solidarity with Palestinians by targeting vessels linked to Israel.

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"What the Yemeni people did in the beginning was to target Israeli ships heading to Israel without causing any human or even significant material losses, just preventing ships from passing as a natural right," he said, asserting, "Now, when America joined in and escalated the situation further, there is no doubt that Yemen will respond," he said.

"We do not want the conflict to expand in the region and we do not prefer that, and we are still working on non-escalation, but the decision is up to the Americans, as long as they continue to attack," Mohammed Abdulsalam said.

He continued, "Yemen is concerned with responding, and is interested in verifying or maintaining its position by preventing Israeli ships from heading to the occupied Palestinian territories."

This comes as the US has accused Iran of trying to spread conflict across the Middle East amid Israel's Hamas war in Gaza.

Referring to Gulf Arab powers, he said, “We do not find justification for taking any action against them, and we call on them to reject the militarization of the Red Sea or the presence of military forces inside the region.”

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