The U.S. and United Kingdom conducted a new wave of strikes on Houthi rebels in Yemen Saturday, hitting at least 30 targets.
The latest counterstrikes against the Iran-backed militant group are a continuation of retaliatory strikes against Iran-backed militant group that has destabilized the Red Sea region and trade routes in the area with strikes amid the ongoing war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza.
The latest strike, executed with fighter jets and ships, comes after Friday’s air assault aimed at other Iran-backed groups in Syria and Iraq, along with the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, seeking retribution for the drone strike that left three U.S. service members dead in Jordan,” per The Associated Press.
The Saturday strikes were carried out by U.S. F/A-18 fighter jets that took off from the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower aircraft carrier along with Tomahawk missiles firing from ships in the Red Sea, the AP reported.
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin confirmed the strikes in a statement Saturday. According the Pentagon, the forces targeted 13 locations associated with the Houthis’ weapons storage facilities, missile systems and launchers, air defense systems and radars.
“This collective action sends a clear message to the Houthis that they will continue to bear further consequences if they do not end their illegal attacks on international shipping and naval vessels,” he wrote in a statement. “We will not hesitate to defend lives and the free flow of commerce in one of the world’s most critical waterways.”
The joint retaliation is the third time that the U.S. and the U.K. conducted joint assaults against Houthi drones and radar sites.
It also comes just days after the U.S. Navy shot down three three Iranian drones and one antiship ballistic missile launched from Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen. Officials said earlier this week that U.S. troops have come under fire from Iranian-backed groups more than 160 times since late October.
The U.S. military also began an initial round of airstrikes on Iranian-backed groups in Syria and Iraq Friday, in retaliation for an attack on a base in Jordan last weekend that killed three American troops.
The Associated Press contributed reporting.
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