In a recent statement aired on Al Mayadeen TV, Ali al-Qahoum, a member of the Houthi group’s Ansarullah politburo, issued a stern warning on Friday, 15th December declaring that any hostile move against Yemen would result in dire consequences and great costs.
Al-Qahoum emphasized the Houthi commitment to the Palestinian cause, asserting that despite U.S., Israeli, or Western threats, the group would not abandon its support for Palestine. Furthermore, he stated that operations against Israel would persist.
Al-Qahoum conveyed Yemen’s preparedness to employ all defensive options in response to potential hostile actions from the United States, Israel, or Western powers. Notably, he underscored Yemen’s dedication to safeguarding international maritime navigation per established international laws and norms.
The warning follows reports that Houthi-controlled Yemen launched attacks on two Liberian-flagged ships in the strategically vital Bab al-Mandab Strait. This incident, as acknowledged by the U.S. military, highlights the increasing threat to vessels in critical shipping lanes posed by the Iran-aligned Houthi group.
Part of the broader ‘Axis of Resistance’ aligned with Iran, the Houthis have been consistently targeting vessels in Red Sea shipping lanes and deploying drones and missiles against Israel. The group’s actions have intensified, with a clear stance articulated – the attacks will persist until Israel ceases its offensive in the Gaza Strip.
The Houthi official’s statement reflects a deepening regional crisis with geopolitical implications. The Yemeni group’s alignment with Iran adds a layer of complexity to the situation, drawing attention to the broader power dynamics in the Middle East.
The Bab al-Mandab Strait is a crucial chokepoint through which a significant portion of the world’s oil shipments pass. Any disruption in this area could have far-reaching consequences on the global economy.
As tensions escalate, diplomatic efforts to defuse the situation are imperative. The Yemeni crisis has the potential to entangle various regional actors, requiring a delicate balancing act to avoid further deterioration.