HMS Diamond shoots down illegal Houthi drone attack in latest Red Sea skirmish – as Defence Secretary Grant Shapps says Britain is ‘undaunted’ by Iran-backed rebel strikes

A view of the HMS Diamond, from the ship’s bridge, firing her Sea Viper missiles at an incoming Houthi drone
Published January 28, 2024

A British warship last night shot down an illegal Houthi drone attack in a new Red Sea skirmish.

Crew on the HMS Diamond successfully repelled a drone strike from the Iran-backed Houthi rebel group as spiralling tensions in the Middle East threaten to blow out into a full-scale regional war.

Defence Secretary Grant Shapps today said on Twitter/X: ‘The UK remains undaunted after yesterday’s illegal attack on @HMSDiamond by the Iranian-backed Houthis. Our commitment to protect innocent lives and the freedom of navigation is absolutely unwavering.’

The Ministry of Defence said: ‘Yesterday HMS Diamond successfully repelled a drone attack from the Iranian-backed Houthis in the Red Sea. Deploying her Sea Viper missile system, Diamond destroyed a drone targeting her, with no injuries or damaged sustained to Diamond or her crew.

‘These intolerable and illegal attacks are completely unacceptable, and it is our duty to protect the freedom of navigation in the Red Sea. We want to thank the brave crew of HMS Diamond for their service to defend British and international interests.’

The British destroyer along with US Navy ships deployed in the area have been been targeted by the group in the past.

It comes after British oil tanker Marlin Luanda was struck by a Houthi missile in the Red Sea, sparking an 18 hour inferno within a cargo tank on the starboard side of the ship and forcing the evacuation of its crew.

However, the management of the ship has been contracted out to a UK-based firm, Oceonix Services Ltd, which has an office in London, according to Companies House records.

Concerns have been raised about Britain’s ability to defend itself from Houthi attacks following a strike on an oil tanker with links to the UK earlier this week.



RELATED: USS Carney, French warship assist burning tanker after Houthi anti-ship ballistic missile attack

A large fire threatened to engulf the ship carrying liquid hydrogen

Published January 27, 2024

The USS Carney assisted a Marshall Islands-flagged oil tanker on Saturday after it caught fire following a Houthi ballistic missile attack, a senior U.S. official told Fox News.

The hours-long blaze was extinguished after the destroyer Carney and a French warship transferred more than 100 cans of firefighting foam to the M/V Marlin Luanda in the Gulf of Aden.

The fire threatened to engulf the ship carrying liquid hydrogen, if not for the swift help from the Americans and French, the official said.

Houthis strike oil tanker in the Gulf of Aden, marking 38th attack since Nov. 19
Fox News reporter Stephanie Bennett has more on the rising tension in the Middle East on ‘Fox News Live.’

The Iranian anti-ship missile hit cargo bay five on the Marlin Luanda, and it could have spread to nearly a dozen more bays.

No one was injured in the attack, but the ship was heavily damaged.

The Houthis said the attack on the Marlin Luanda, which has British ties, was in response to American and British aggression.

The last time Iranians hit a ship that was carrying flammable cargo was in 2019, and the fire burned for four days.

The attack on the Marlin Luanda is the 38th by the Houthis directed at commercial vessels and U.S. Navy ships in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden since Nov. 19.



RELATED: US military destroys Houthi antiship missile after oil tanker attack

US says missile presented an ‘imminent threat’ to merchant ship and US Navy vessels in the region.

A Houthi supporter holds an RPG launcher during a protest against US-led attacks on the group’s targets, near Sanaa, Yemen, January 25, 2024 [Khaled Abdullah/Reuters]
Published January 27, 2024

The United States military says it destroyed a Houthi antiship missile in Yemen that was aimed into the Red Sea and ready to launch after the Iran-aligned group attacked a British oil tanker in the Gulf of Aden.

The missile “presented an imminent threat to merchant vessels and the US Navy ships in the region”, the US Central Command said on Saturday in a statement on X.

The Houthi group has launched drones and missiles at shipping in the Red Sea since November 19 in response to Israel’s military operations in Gaza.




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