A British-registered cargo ship, the Rubymar, flying under a Belize flag, was targeted in a missile attack in the Gulf of Aden, an act claimed by Yemen’s Houthi movement.

The UK Maritime Trade Operations agency provided an update stating that an unnamed ship was abandoned off Yemen after being damaged by a blast.

The attack took place late Sunday night, leading to the abandonment of the ship by its crew following the impact of two missiles. Subsequent reports confirmed the crew’s safety, with the vessel anchored and military authorities providing assistance.

The Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, through which about 12% of global seaborne trade passes, have seen increased risks due to these attacks. The situation has led to some shipping companies halting operations in the area to avoid the threat of further attacks.

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The Rubymar cargo ship suffered “catastrophic damages and came to a complete halt” after being targeted in a military operation, said Houthi military spokesman Yahya Saree in a televised address on Monday.

“As a result of the extensive damage the ship suffered, it is now at risk of potential sinking in the Gulf of Aden.”

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George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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P Brace
P Brace
1 month ago

“British registered……flying under a Belize flag” needs an explanation.

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  P Brace

Tax dodging or at least minimisation would by my guess.

DF
DF
1 month ago
Reply to  P Brace

The address held by the IMO for the shipowner company is an address in Southampton – a flat in a block of flats with a lot of company registrations…

The Shipowner Company itself is an SA, which suggests French or former French colony – guessing from online information the ship is probably owned by a company based in Lebanon. Who the actual beneficial owner is is, like almost anything in the shipping industry, essentially opaque.

George
George
1 month ago
Reply to  DF

I’d be interested to learn what the cargo was and it’s destination.

Mark B
Mark B
1 month ago
Reply to  P Brace

Flags of convenience seem to be the norm.

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
1 month ago

See the Houthi were attempting bragging rights over ‘having driven off Destroyer’ (HMS Diamond) rather than it’s return to UK. Unsure if HMS Richmond actually there but presume any gapping in replacement by will not have been ideal.

Frank
Frank
1 month ago
Reply to  Gavin Gordon

HMS Diamond was in Gib last time I heard….. probably adding some extra “capability”….. HMS Richmond can only cover a small area if she is there.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Gavin Gordon

Not ideal at all.

But……

I’d not underestimate Sea Ceptor it has a very decent range.

Even A30 has a published engagement range that wouldn’t cover the whole area anyway.

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
1 month ago

Totally agree, SB – I’d personally be comfortable aboard a Type 23 monitoring Russian cruisers/destroyers in transit though English Channel. Russians would have to shoot first and announce ‘intention’ afterwards to have any real chance, I believe (seem familiar). But they’d better be quick, even then.

AlexS
AlexS
1 month ago

The Western incompetency in this issue is staggering, very bad sign to China and Taiwan and the South China Sea freedom of navigation and overall freedom of navigation all over the world.

Bringer of Facts
Bringer of Facts
1 month ago
Reply to  AlexS

Western incompetency, rather than Iranian/ Houthi belligerence?

AlexS
AlexS
1 month ago

The point is that western sea power have existed for centuries if it accepts being defeated by a mere Iranian/Houthi belligerence then the future will be dark.

monkey spanker
monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  AlexS

For centuries the response would have been to go and kill the attackers and anyone else looking suspicious. Take the weapons and leave someone friendly in charge.
That isn’t acceptable just now nobody is willing to invade Yemen and they know it.

AlexS
AlexS
1 month ago
Reply to  monkey spanker

You don’t go for Houthis. You punish the Iranian Islamic regime.

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
1 month ago
Reply to  AlexS

Give it time.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago

Until you hit the source this will continue. In particular, arms manufacturing facilities in Iran (Drones) which will also go some way toward helping Ukraine and other coalition forces operating in the area. U.S. Centcom says its forces seized an Iranian arms shipment bound for Houthis on Jan. 28Reuters February 15, 20241:46 PM GMT Updated 4 days ago DUBAI, Feb 15 (Reuters) – U.S. forces seized advanced conventional weapons and other lethal aid from Iran that were bound for Houthi-held areas of Yemen on a vessel in the Arabian Sea on Jan. 28, the U.S. Central Command said in a… Read more »

AlexS
AlexS
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Until you hit the source this will continue.

Precisely.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  AlexS

Maybe you and Nigel should get jobs at the MOD or the Pentagon. I’m sure they could use such capable tacticians 🤦

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  AlexS

It’s always good to see capable tacticians at work! 👊

President Joe Biden warned Iran’s supreme leader on Wednesday that the U.S. would respond if Iran or its allied proxies attacked U.S. service members stationed in the Middle East.

Speaking at a joint news conference with Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese at the White House, Biden said: “My warning to the Ayatollah was that if they continue to move against those troops, we will respond. And he should be prepared.”

Bringer of Facts
Bringer of Facts
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Sink the MV Behshad, Iran plays on the fact that the US does not want escalation.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago

That would at least be a start.

ChrisLondon
ChrisLondon
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

I hope it all goes to Ukraine. I am sure they will find a good use for it all.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  ChrisLondon

👍

Bringer of Facts
Bringer of Facts
1 month ago

They must have been large missiles to have caused severe damage to such a large ship

As we said on here before the Houthis only have to get lucky once. The effect of crippling this ship is likely to harm the willingness of shipping companies to transit the Red Sea.

Frank
Frank
1 month ago

It already has had that effect though… We simply cannot intercept or stop these events with a solitary Ship in such a large area…. even with a rather large number of other ships from many different Countries….. What’s the biggest surprise is how uninvolved China is given the sheer volume of Chinese tat that uses this route……. funny how their base in Djibouti seemed to offer a safe haven to the Iranian Spy Ship…….

Time the west and in particular Europe woke up to the Bigger picture being played out right now. 🤔 ?

Jim
Jim
1 month ago
Reply to  Frank

It’s not surprising China is not involved. For all the talk of China having a blue water capable navy it’s never fired a shot in anger or faced down an anti ship missile. Shipping rates for China are spiking further cratering its economy but what can it actually do about it. They have been applying pressure on Iran but Iran says the Houthis are not under its orders. There are so many facets to the Iranian government that they probably don’t know for sure who in Iran is ordering this. It’s the problem with asymmetric warfare and arming rouge states… Read more »

monkey spanker
monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

China and Russia have safe passage granted by the houtis just now so they don’t have an issue.
I wonder if the U.K. government thought about talking to Iran and the houtis to try and get the same safe passage. Doubtful it would have worked but possible as There issue is with Israel.

Jim
Jim
1 month ago
Reply to  monkey spanker

That’s not true, ships carrying Russian crude have been hit and over half the container ships now re routing have Chinese cargo.

monkey spanker
monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

All I know is the news sites say China and Russia have agreements their ships won’t be hit. I’ve not payed much attention to what has been targeted.
There does seem to be a complicated issue of Chinese cargo and Chinese ships. A ship is obvious as we see the number of ships displaying Chinese flags, Chinese identification on ship tracker system in the region has went from 2 a day to over 60. That could be 2% to 60% my brain is in forgetful mode.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

China is not doing anything because it’s not chinases ships being attacked…china and Iran are friends….so those 6 large surface combatant that china has in the region are just sitting back and taking it all in…every bit of intelligence they can get infact.

Jim
Jim
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

It’s Chinese cargo, container rates have sky rocketed and it’s China that has to pay for these.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Ummm not so much..the consumer pays and the consumer is the west.

Redshift
Redshift
1 month ago
Reply to  Frank

Because they don’t attack Chinese ships? That might have some bearing don’t you think?

Frank
Frank
1 month ago
Reply to  Redshift

I’m very interested in that….. less so your reply…… 🙄

Redshift
Redshift
1 month ago
Reply to  Frank

You can’t think of any reasons why they only attack Western ships and not Chinese or Russian?

Frank
Frank
1 month ago
Reply to  Redshift

You have a strange attitude….. You also seem to want an argument for some reason…. It might help if you stuck to the one Profile. 🙄

Paul T
Paul T
1 month ago
Reply to  Redshift

The PLAN are active in the Red Sea ,so with a combination of political influence ( likely very effective ) backed up with Military Force, that may explain the lack of attacks on Chinese Shipping.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul T

Well the expertise for all of the weapons being used came to Iran from china and Iran supplies these nutters…so no nutter is going to attack shipping going to china or all their goodies will dry up in the end.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Frank

Indeed the very missiles that are being fired were built using knowledge china shared with Iran….it’s why a backward nation like Iran has an effective ballistic missile force..with far more modern weapons than They could ever have built and designed themselves….that’s they are supplying across the Middle East from the gulf to the Eastern Med….although the axis against the west is not a formal pact ( as this would potentially wake the monster that is the west) china has been investing untold billions into creating an anti western Alliance that is able to create threat across the globe…both kinetic threat,… Read more »

monkey spanker
monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

What’s the answer? Should we try to get along and hope things are ok? Reduce ties and trade and encourage others to do so?
Taking an economic hit to make our country less vulnerable as the Chinese supposedly have been doing is a tough sell. Spend more making better forces and other ways of countering interference could be easier.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  monkey spanker

in reality there are only a few roads to be honest. with china specifically there are a couple of areas: 1) we underestimate the importance of Taiwan to Chinese national identity, this is profoundly deep to them it’s about making their nation whole..western support or intervention is seen as an unacceptable red line…china is not run my idiots and they will negotiate on many things but essentially Taiwan is a red line for china and we will end up going to war over it if we also make it a red line…unless 2) we convince china it would loss completely….but… Read more »

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
1 month ago
Reply to  Frank

Presume you don’t mean Uninvolved, Frank. Orchestrated more appropriate, if we’re going to reduce complicated realities to single wordbites, like Incompetence for instance*. In this instance, China attempting to obtain real world western practices whilst not expending warfighting capability, would be my take for what it’s worth. Just spent a day watching the Munich Security Conference highlights on Sky, which may go some way to clarifying your last. Even so, what was personally most revealing, i.e. in such a overall insightful conference from lay perspective, was Foreign Minister Wang Yi, apparently patiently & reasonably from a Chinese perspective, informing the… Read more »

Luke Rogers
Luke Rogers
1 month ago

No British flag, no British protection. It should really be that simple.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Luke Rogers

almost everything you buy is delivered by ships that are flagged under nations of convenience…no ships with other flags no goods in our shops or raw materials for our industrial capabilities…we are not doing this for charity.

Luke Rogers
Luke Rogers
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Then perhaps it is time the ship owners make a decision. Pay the taxes here and be protected, or pay the higher insurance and roll the dice. Panama, Liberia etc should become flags of inconvenience, with enhanced safety inspections when they reach our ports. Those same fears you have may some day be realised in our own waters. Do you think they will keep coming or will they ply some other waters in relative safety? There are insufficient hulls flagged to keep us supplied as we stand. May as we’ll force the issue now.

AlexS
AlexS
1 month ago

I would move at least a Sky Sabre battery to Cyprus just in case.

Frank
Frank
1 month ago
Reply to  AlexS

Sky Sabre (land Sabre) is for local area defence….. Cyprus is some 2500 miles away from Aden …… What will it do in regards to protecting shipping ?

AlexS
AlexS
1 month ago
Reply to  Frank

If Heezbollah – or Heezbollah disguised under another name – gets funny and starts to send drones and rockets to British AFB in Cyprus.

Last edited 1 month ago by AlexS
Frank
Frank
1 month ago
Reply to  AlexS

If they can send them from Gaza or maybe Lebanon then yes….. but sending them 2500 miles from Yemen then no….. but I sort of get your point…..

AlexS
AlexS
1 month ago
Reply to  Frank

Yes from Lebanon or Syria.

Jordanian forces killed at least 2 Heezbollah infiltrations in their territory, they wanted to attack Israel from Jordania to start a war between them.

Last edited 1 month ago by AlexS
Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  AlexS

I’m very surprised Heezbollah have not taken more advantage of the Isreali army being entangled in Gaza to be honest…Israel or someone must have scared the crap out of them for them to have been this quite to be honest….I do wonder why.

AlexS
AlexS
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

If you follow the normal western media you don’t know that every day there are combats between both sides.
Seems to be a complete censorship of what is going in the North of Israel.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  AlexS

Yes but these are low level…I’m talking about a major incursion into Israel, not ongoing boarder firefights which are essentially minimum effort to keep the complete nutters happy.

Jay
Jay
1 month ago
Reply to  Frank

Deploying a Sky Sabre battery to Cyprus is absolutely advisable at the moment.

If anyone wants to reach out and touch a UK interest beyond shipping, it is among the most likely of targets – and currently an easy one.

monkey spanker
monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  AlexS

There is a sky sabre on the type 23.

Frank
Frank
1 month ago

Apparently this happened 40 miles from the port of Mocha……. Lets just see if anyone in Government gets woken by the smell of Coffee…….. 😎🤔

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Frank

Ohhh that’s very good 😁

Martin
Martin
1 month ago

Where are the crew from,I some how doubt its the UK. Well at least we have one 30 year old clapped war out ship there. With no land attack weapons. And short range air defence Well done the UK

Frank
Frank
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

This is and has been normal though for decades…..

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

Did you think of those big words all by yourself.

Martin
Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

no your mum helped me with them.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

😂

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Always agreeing with the trolls as usual Nigel. Somethings never change.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

I’m glad you needed the assistance of a 78 year old lady. She could teach you some better comebacks. Maybe sort you out a personality and some intelligence while you are on the subject.

Last edited 1 month ago by Robert Blay
Martin
Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Well she failed with yours, I shall take the advice. Are you still not taking your meds or has the nurse let near the internet again.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

That doesn’t even make sense let alone be funny. Google search a personality. Nigel Collins will send you a link. He’s got nothing between the ears either.

Martin
Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Why not just stick to the subject in hand. You clearly have a massive brain and ego. Are you a BMW driver by chance? Fell free to reply in normal way. I'[ll not read it but you will feel better for sending it.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

VW actually

Martin
Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Golf? GTI? never mind, enjoy your day.

Jay
Jay
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

You do know Richmond has CAMM right? Yes it’s range isn’t exceptional, but it isn’t exactly point defence either is it?

Your comment about her age is also irrelevant, given that her main armament is literally brand new.

Martin
Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  Jay

agreed but its not area defence

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

Define short range.
5km
10km
20km
30km
40km
More?

Please offer up a figure.
Then define if its a PDMS, local or area defence system

Martin
Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Where ever a teacher or an RSM, very bossy

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
1 month ago
Reply to  Martin

WO in the RN and a Weapon Engineer with plenty of time at sea on surface units such as T42, T22,MCM T23,LPD as a maintainer, operator and system engineer doing whole ship Weapon System Engineering… Oh and I taught in Collingwood and in a Foreign draft so Yes to the question

So you going to answer mine?

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

👍

Martin
Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

less than 10km is short range less than 5 in close range, speaking as ex Artillery .

Richard Beedall
Richard Beedall
1 month ago

The UKMTO based in Dubai is an obscure organisation that often seems to be no more than a bulletin board. The Tom Hank movie Captain Philips certainly did them no favours. I’ve reached out to them several times asking if they would do an online interview for an article, but no response. Increasingly looks like the RN is stuck providing an escort for Red Sea OPG tasking for the foreseeable future. That will be a real challenge to provide. It perhaps explains why the MOD is refusing to confirm that HMS Westminster has been decommissioned, it will be politically very… Read more »

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago

What will be interesting to see is if they decide to throw the kitchen sink at her and take the cost of the refit.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Doubtful it will happen.
By the time she went into and came out of the sheds, got crewed up, did work up, JMC, deployment training etc we will have new ships bobbing around.
Better off spending the 130Mil plus saving from not doing the refit on the surface flotilla

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

True but not that many hulls to be honest and the RN escort fleet is in a shocking state numbers wise, without Westminster we are looking at sixteen escorts until 2026 and not getting back up to 19 until 2028. That is without any more ships being decommissioned When you also consider that a number of the remaining 23s has the lifexs done on 2017-18 the fleet is actually likely to contract even more in 2026-28 even with the new hulls….so in really not lifex Westminster will hit the RN escort numbers into the 2030s..Argyll is looking iffy, Northumberland and… Read more »