Yemen LIVE: Explosions reported in cities including Sana’a after US Air Force recon jets spotted in the Middle East

Yemen LIVE: Explosions reported in cities including Sana’a after US Air Force recon jets spotted in the Middle East
Yemen LIVE: Explosions reported in cities including Sana’a after US Air Force recon jets spotted in the Middle East

US defence official says ‘we hit them hard’

A US defence official is reported to have told Voice of America: ‘We hit them pretty hard, pretty good.’

First unverified photo of explosions in Yemen

These images supposedly showing the moment missiles struck have been shared on X by freelance journalist Ali Al-Sakani.

US and UK bombing ‘more than dozen sites’

The US and the UK are bombing more than a dozen sites, in a massive retaliatory strike using warship-launched Tomahawk missiles and fighter jets, several US officials have told the Associated Press.

Associated Press journalists in Yemen’s capital, Sana’a, heard four explosions early Friday local time but saw no sign of warplanes.

Two residents of Hodieda, Amin Ali Saleh and Hani Ahmed, said they heard five strong explosions. Hodieda lies on the Red Sea and is the largest port city controlled by the Houthis.

Yemen freelance journalist Ali Al-Sakani said on X, formerly Twitter, locals had told him the strikes were targeting the Houthi positions in Sana’a, Saada, Dhamar and Hudaydah.

Breaking: EXPLOSIONS heard in Yemen

The US and the UK have started bombing Yemen with three explosions heard, reports Reuters.

Three explosions were heard in Yemen’s capital Sana’a

Yemen city on alert and Houthi camps evacuated

Three residents of Yemen’s Hodeidah told news agency Reuters the city has been on alert since Thursday evening, with the heavy deployment of Houthi forces and movement of military trucks.

Houthi military sites and camps in Hodeidah were also being evacuated, they said.

Who are the Houthi rebels taking over Yemen?

The Shia militant group is allied to Tehran, as are Hamas and Hezbollah, and seeks to reduce western influence in the Middle East.

Its slogan includes the words ‘death to America’, ‘death to Israel’ and ‘a curse upon the Jews’.

You can read more about the Houthi rebels below.

Breaking: US Air Force jets seen flying over Saudi Arabia

Air force recon jets were seen flying over Saudi Arabia on Thursday night. The Boeing RC-135 was spotted on Flight24 radar above Riyadh.

Tory MP: ‘Red Sea situation no longer tenable’

Tory MP and chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee Alicia Kearns says the situation in the Red Sea is no longer tenable.

She released a statement on X, formerly Twitter, with Britain on the brink of launching airstrikes in Yemen.

Airspace around Yemen is completely empty

The image below taken from Flightradar24 shows the airspace around Yemen completely empty ahead of the imminent airstrikes.

US President Joe Biden to make statement

US President Joe Biden is expected to make a statement tonight after the US and UK conduct military strikes against the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen.

The strikes are expected shortly with a series of statements from the US, UK and other international leaders to follow, the Times reports.

Both the UK and the US warned there could be consequences if ships are continually targeted in the Red Sea.

Tesla will suspend most car production at its factory near Berlin from Jan. 29 to Feb. 11, the company said on Thursday, citing a lack of components due to shifts in transport routes because of attacks on vessels in the Red Sea.

The partial production stop is evidence that the crisis in the Red Sea, unleashed by Iranian-backed Houthi militants attacking vessels in solidarity with Palestinian Islamist group Hamas fighting Israel in Gaza, has hit Europe’s largest economy.

The U.S. electric vehicle maker is the first company to disclose an interruption to output due to the disruption. Many companies including Geely, China’s second-largest automaker by sales, and Swedish home furnishing company Ikea have warned of delays to deliveries.

‘The armed conflicts in the Red Sea and the associated shifts in transport routes between Europe and Asia via the Cape of Good Hope are also having an impact on production in Gruenheide,’ Tesla said in a statement.

Read more from Reuters here:

Scotland’s First Minister Humza Yousaf has called for a recall of Parliament.

He said: ‘The UK does not have a good record of military intervention in the Middle East.

‘It is therefore incumbent that Westminster is recalled, MPs briefed and allowed to debate and scrutinise any decision to pursue military action that the UK Government is proposing.’

The SNP’s Westminster leader, Stephen Flynn, also said MPs should be recalled, calling the situation in the Red Sea ‘complex and serious’.

On X, he wrote: ‘Based solely upon media reports this is quite clearly a very complex and serious situation that is developing at speed.

‘It is incumbent upon the UK Government to appraise Parliament as soon as possible and MPs must therefore be recalled to Westminster.’

Deputy Prime Minister Oliver Dowden leaves Downing Street

Oliver Dowden, Deputy Prime Minister, has been pictured leaving Downing Street this evening.

United Kingdom, London 11th January 2024:  Oliver Dowden, Deputy Prime Minister, leaves the cabinet officet. An Emergency cabinet meeting was called by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to discuss the airstrikes against the Houthis in Yemen Credit: Ryan Jenkinson / Story Picture Agency

Houthis are ‘merchants of chaos’ and ‘don’t play by the same rules as the rest of us’, maritime security expert says

Maritime security analyst Ian Ralby said Houthi rebels were ‘merchants of chaos’ and ‘don’t play by the same rules as the rest of us’.

He told Sky News: ‘The Houthis are merchants of chaos, and they are really enjoying the attention they are getting.

‘This is a very dangerous moment… [the Houthis] do not play by the same rules as the rest of us.’

Sir Lindsay Hoyle, Speaker of the House of Commons, leaves Downing Street

United Kingdom, London 11th January 2024:  Sir Lindsay Hoyle, Speaker of the House of Commons leaves Downing Street. An Emergency cabinet meeting was called by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to discuss the airstrikes against the Houthis in Yemen Credit: Ryan Jenkinson / Story Picture Agency

Iran may try to close Strait of Gibraltar if UK attacks Houthis, Major General Chip Chapman says

Iran may seek to make good on a threat to close the Strait of Gibraltar if the UK retaliates against the Houthi rebel force for drone and missile attacks on ships in the Red Sea, a military expert has warned.

Major General Chip Chapman, a former head of counter-terrorism at the MoD, told GB News: ‘One of the things which could be done…if you take the Houthis as one of their proxy forces [Iran], is that they’ve said that they might close the Strait of Gibraltar.

‘You might say they haven’t got the capability to do that but they’ve also got a proxy force with the Polisario Front in Morocco.

‘So, although it might seem unlikely, it doesn’t mean that it wouldn’t happen.’

He added: ‘In essence, this is what the Houthis would say is part of the theatre of war against the Israelis.

‘And from both their perspective and the Iranian perspective that is a unity of fronts and a ring of fire around the Israelis.’

The Government is considering strikes on targets in Yemen in a bid to stop attacks by Iranian-backed Houthi rebels on ships in the Red Sea.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak held an emergency cabinet meeting on Thursday night as the situation appeared to escalate.

A British warship joined three US ships and a French vessel last month in a bid to protect the ships in narrow strip of water between Yemen and east Africa, which is a key trade route, but the attacks have continued.

These are the ships that have been deployed and which others may be sent there following Thursday night’s developments:

Sir Lindsay Hoyle arrives at Cabinet Office

The Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle has been seen entering the cabinet office in the last 30 minutes where he has been briefed.

‘There are no defensive options left’

Sidharth Kaushal, of the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) think-tank said ‘it would appear that things are coming to a head’.

There are no defensive options left which will convince these companies to return to the Red Sea and Gulf of Oman. That will require a cessation of hostilities.

Offensive options could include airstrikes on military infrastructure in Yemen. Eight years ago the United States destroyed a Houthi radar station apparently used to coordinate attacks on one of its ships.

Breaking: Stealth jets being readied for action

The Mail understands F-35B Lightning stealth jets based at RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus are being readied for action.

These aircraft were expected to play a key role in the air strikes likely to target Houthi rocket launcher sites and command and control facilities.

British drones equipped with lethal RX-9 were also primed, it is understood.

(Below is a stock image of a F-35B Lightning Fighter jet)

Image shows an F-35B Lightning Jet creating a vapor cone as it flew past the Aircraft Carrier during flight deck operations which took place over the two days where the Jets conducted vertical landings, take offs, and hot pits (refuelling).  Personnel from 617 Squadron, RAF Marham, deployed  on board HMS Queen Elizabeth for a number of days in July 2023 for  the Aviation Integration Period, in preparation for the Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 2023 Deployment.  RAF Marham is the home of the F-35B Lightning, a 5th Generation, multi-role, stealth fighter.  RAF Photographic Competition 2023 Winners: Category D: Peoples Choice Judges Nominations Award: 10 Image title: Vapor Cone Photographer: AS1 Natalie Adams

Why are the Houthis targeting shipping vessels?

The rebels say their assaults are aimed at stopping Israel’s war on Hamas in the Gaza Strip. But their targets are increasingly random, raising the risk of a US retaliatory strike on Yemen.

Britain has been moving warships into Red Sea

Britain has been moving its warships into the Red Sea in recent days.

Type 23 frigate HMS Richmond left Gibraltar yesterday amid a build up of forces in the region between Africa and Arabia.

Admiral Lord West, the former First Sea Lord, said that the UK and US has to show that ‘enough is enough’ after drones and missiles launched from the Arabian state were shot down by HMS Diamond and American warships.

Sir Keir Starmer to be briefed by the government

Sky News is reporting the Government will brief Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer following the virtual cabinet meeting.

Labour Party leader Sir Keir Starmer speaks with students and local residents during a Q and A session at the Manchester Evening News offices in Oldham, Greater Manchester. Picture date: Thursday January 11, 2024. PA Photo. Photo credit should read: Peter Byrne/PA Wire

Breaking: US and UK ‘to carry out military action TONIGHT’

The US and the UK are ready to carry out airstrikes against the Iranian-backed Houthis in Yemen as early as tonight – targeting the ballistic sites where the rebels have been launching missiles.

Lord Cameron: ‘Situation in Red Sea dangerous’

Lord Cameron spoke on Monday about the situation in the Red Sea, which he labelled as ‘extremely dangerous’.

Sunak spoke with Egypt’s President today

Downing Street has just released details of a call Mr Sunak had with Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi this afternoon to discuss the rise in Houthi attacks.

A Downing Street spokesperson said the PM told him ‘the UK would continue to take action to defend freedom of navigation and protect lives at sea’.

The two leaders spoke about the rise in Houthi attacks, the spokesperson told The Telegraph, and the disruptive impact on global shipping.

The Prime Minister thanked President Sisi for his continued support on the humanitarian and diplomatic effort in Gaza, including on joint work to secure the release of British hostages and those with links to the UK.

They agreed on the importance of significantly scaling up the aid reaching Palestinians in Gaza to prevent a worsening humanitarian crisis. The Prime Minister said the UK was urging Israel to open more land crossings and to allow in far greater quantities of aid, up to 500 trucks a day.

Houthi attacks could cause Tesco price rise

The Houthi attacks in the Red Sea are heavily impacting vessels carrying cargo with shipping companies in response rerouting around South Africa.

Tesco boss Ken Murphy has warned this could create a knock-on effect on the prices of some goods.

Houthis ‘have carried out 27 attacks in Red Sea’

The US Central Command says the Houthis have carried out 27 attacks in the Red Sea since November 19.

They said the rebels’ latest attack came today at around 2am (Yemen time) when they fired an anti-ship ballistic missile ‘from Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen into international shipping lanes in the Gulf of Aden’.

One ship saw the missile hit the water. No one was injured and no damage was reported.

Grant Shapps says ‘enough is enough’

Defence Secretary Grant Shapps spoke yesterday about the Houthi’s continued attacks in the Red Sea.

You can hear what he said in the video below.

‘Vital there’s a vote in Parliament’

The UK’s only Palestinian MP Layla Moran says it’s vital there is a vote in Parliament if Britain is planning military action.

Sunak ready to sign off military action

The Cabinet was tonight due to sign off military reprisals against Iranian-backed rebels terrorising shipping in the Red Sea.

Rishi Sunak summoned an emergency meeting of the Cabinet at 7.45pm to brief ministers ahead of expected overnight air strikes against Houthi rebels operating out of Yemen.

Downing Street declined to comment ahead of what is expected to be a significant military operation led by the United States.

But Whitehall sources confirmed that the Prime Minister is ready to sign off military reprisals against the Houthis, who have launched a string of attacks on merchant shipping in the Red Sea in recent weeks.

The plans were finalised today following meetings of the Prime Minister’s National Security Council and the emergency committee Cobra.

‘Danger we end up in conflict with Iran’

Sir William Patey, the former UK ambassador to Saudi Arabia and Iraq, has told Sky News the airstrikes could spark a conflict between the UK and Iran.

Ultimately the biggest danger is that we end up in a conflict with Iran because the Houthis are acting here not on their own but agents of Iran.

The West is plotting airstrikes in response to the Houthi rebels attacks in the Red Sea.

David Cameron seen going into Downing Street

Foreign Secretary Lord Cameron has just been seen walking into No10 Downing Street ahead of the meeting.

United Kingdom, London 11th January 2024:  Foreign Secretary, David Cameron arrives in Downing Street for an Emergency cabinet meeting called by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to discuss the airstrikes against the Houthis in Yemen Credit: Ryan Jenkinson / Story Picture Agency

Rishi Sunak to hold emergency meeting

Hello and welcome to our live coverage as Rishi Sunak is about to hold an emergency meeting with his cabinet.

The Prime Minister is set to plan with members a response to the attacks from the Houthi rebels in the Red Sea.

A member of media works outside 10 Downing Street in London, Britain, January 11, 2024. REUTERS/Hollie Adams

Written by bourbiza mohamed

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