Two Philippine crew among dead in Houthi missile attack, says govt

Two Philippine crew among dead in Houthi missile attack, says govt
Two Philippine crew among dead in Houthi missile attack, says govt

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Nevin Al Sukari - Sana'a - An aerial view of the Barbados-flagged ship True Confidence ablaze following a Houthi missile attack at sea, March 6, 2024, in this handout photo. — Reuters pic

MANILA, March 7 — Two Filipino crew members were among those killed in a missile attack by Yemen’s Houthi rebels on a ship in the Gulf of Aden, the Philippine government said today.

Those killed in the attack on Wednesday appear to be first deaths resulting from Houthi attacks on merchant vessels transiting the key Red Sea trade route.

“With great sadness, the Department of Migrant Workers confirms the deaths of two Filipino seafarers in the most recent attack by Houthi rebels on ships plying the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden,” the agency said in a statement.

“We are also informed that two other Filipino crewmen were severely injured in the attack on their ship,” it added.

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Manila is liaising with the ship owners and its crewing agency “to ascertain the conditions of the rest of the ship’s crew” and to repatriate them, the department said.

An anti-ship ballistic missile struck the Barbados-flagged, Liberian-owned M/V True Confidence, after which its crew reported “three fatalities, at least four injuries, of which three are in critical condition, and significant damage to the ship”, the US Central Command said in a statement.

Houthi military spokesman Yahya Saree wrote on social media that the True Confidence was targeted with missiles “after the ship’s crew rejected warning messages” from the rebels.

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The Iran-backed group began attacking ships in the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea last November, a campaign they say is intended to signal solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza.

Manila is still seeking the release of 17 Filipinos taken hostage by the Houthis in November after the rebels seized their ship in the Red Sea. — AFP

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