Food, medicines unable to reach vulnerable populations due to Houthi attacks in Red Sea: US Secretary of State

Ronit Kawale
Ronit Kawale - Senior Editor
3 Min Read

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken highlighted on Friday that attacks by Iran-backed Houthi militants on commercial ships in the Red Sea are preventing food and medicine from reaching vulnerable populations.

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Emphasizing concerns about shipping products through the Red Sea, US Secretary of State Blinken, along with other G7 countries, reaffirmed commitments to protect freedom of navigation.

“Houthis attacks on commercial vessels in the Red Sea are preventing food and medicines from reaching vulnerable populations. My G7 counterparts and I reaffirmed our commitment to protecting freedom of navigation,” the US Secretary of State posted on X.

Houthi attacks on commercial vessels on Red Sea trade routes began in mid-November, with the group linking these disruptions to its demand for an end to Israel's offensive in Gaza and aid delivery to Palestinians 'under siege'.

The Houthi rebels, who are an Iran-aligned group, have said they will not stop attacking until Israel ends hostilities in Gaza.

The US and Britain launched air and surface strikes, including fighter jets, against Houthi positions in Yemen.

Earlier on Wednesday, US Central Command forces successfully shot down two unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in Iranian-backed Houthi terrorist-controlled areas in Yemen.

In particular, UAVs presented an imminent threat to US, coalition, and merchant ships in the area.

These actions are taken to protect freedom of navigation and make international waters safer for U.S., coalition, and merchant vessels.

According to US CENTCOM, these actions have been taken to make international waters safe and protect freedom of navigation.

Emphasizing on the tension in the Red Sea, the Foreign Ministry said that it is a matter of concern for India.

Asked whether India has discussed the Red Sea situation with other major powers, and what is New Delhi's policy on the issue, Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) official spokesperson Randhir Jaiswal said at a weekly press briefing. “This is a matter of concern not only for us but for many international players. We are discussing it with our interlocutors…the French President was here, with Iran when our Foreign Minister went there, and also with the UAE President when he was here.”

The MEA spokesperson also highlighted that the Indian Navy is also active, and is providing support to several ships not only in India but also in other countries.

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