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US military destroys 4 Houthi drones targeting American warship, coalition vessel

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The U.S. military says it has shot down four drones launched by Yemen’s Houthi rebels that were targeting an American vessel and a Coalition warship in the Red Sea. 

U.S. Central Command said in a statement Thursday that the attack was the second of its kind in the last two days. 

“Between 6:00 and 10:56 p.m. (Sanaa time) on March 28, and for the second day in a row, United States Central Command successfully engaged and destroyed four unmanned aerial systems (UAS) launched by Iranian backed Houthi terrorists in Yemen,” it added. “These UAS were aimed at a Coalition vessel and a U.S. warship and were engaged in self-defense over the Red Sea. There were no injuries or damage reported to U.S. or coalition ships.” 

“It was determined these weapons presented an imminent threat to merchant vessels and U.S. Navy ships in the region,” CENTCOM also said. “These actions are taken to protect freedom of navigation and make international waters safer and more secure for U.S. Navy and merchant vessels.” 

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People lift their rifles and chant slogans while participating in a protest staged in solidarity with Palestinians and Yemen’s Houthi rebels in Sanaa, Yemen, on March 22.  (Mohammed Hamoud/Getty Images)

The day before, CENTCOM said it “engaged and destroyed four long-range unmanned aerial systems (UAS) launched by Iranian-backed Houthi terrorists in Yemen” that were “aimed at a U.S. warship and engaged in self-defense over the Red Sea.” 

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USS Dwight D. Eisenhower fighter jet

A F/A-18E Super Hornet fighter jet is catapulted off the flight deck of the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower aircraft carrier in the Red Sea on Feb. 13. The Associated Press, citing a U.S. official, reports that the jets from the aircraft carrier struck Houthi underground storage facilities in Yemen last week.  (Reuters/Hamad I Mohammed)

The actions by the U.S. military come a week after CENTCOM said it carried out strikes against three Houthi underground storage facilities in Yemen. 

The militant group has been launching attacks on ships transiting the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden since the onset of the Israel-Hamas war last October, disrupting shipping in the region. 

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Houthi supporters rally in Yemen

Houthi supporters attend a rally, in Sanaa, Yemen, on March 8.  (AP/Osamah Abdulrahman)

“Illegal Houthi attacks have killed three mariners, sunk a commercial vessel lawfully transiting the Red Sea, disrupted humanitarian aid bound for Yemen, harmed Middle East economies, and caused environmental damage,” according to CENTCOM. 

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