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According to a statement issued by U.S. Central Command last night, the Houthis “launched a complex attack of Iranian designed one-way attack UAVs (OWA UAVs), anti-ship cruise missiles, and an anti-ship ballistic missile from Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen into the Southern Red Sea, towards international shipping lanes where dozens of merchant vessels were transiting.”

Eighteen drones, two cruise missiles and a ballistic missile were shot down by a combination of F-18s from the aircraft carrier USS Dwight Eisenhower, three U.S. Navy destroyers—the USS Gravely, Laboon and Mason—and the Royal Navy destroyer HMS Diamond. “This is the 26th Houthi attack on commercial shipping lanes in the Red Sea since Nov. 19,” the statement said. “There were no injuries or damage reported.”

Grant Shapps, the U.K. defense secretary, said: “The attacks launched by the Houthis are unacceptable and their consequences will be severe.” The Royal Navy frigate HMS Richmond departed its home base in England yesterday for the Red Sea where it will join the Diamond and HMS Lancaster. Also present in the Red Sea are single naval vessels from Italy, France and Spain.

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