The crew of the bulk cargo ship M/V Verbena abandoned ship after it was hit by missiles fired by Yemen’s Houthi rebels in the Gulf of Aden, according to the US military. These attacks by the Houthis, which have targeted vessels in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden since November 2023, are claimed to be in support of Palestinians during the Israel-Hamas conflict in Gaza.

The M/V Verbena, a Palauan-flagged ship owned by Ukraine and operated by Poland, issued a distress call after being struck by two cruise missiles on Thursday. The attack caused fires that the crew could not control. The cargo ship Anna Meta rescued the crew, while a US military statement noted that the nearby Iranian frigate IRIN Jamaran did not respond to the distress call. A sailor injured in the attack was evacuated by US forces.

Another ship, the M/V Tutor, was abandoned after being hit by a sea drone near Hodeida on Wednesday, leading to severe flooding. This ship is now adrift in the Red Sea. The UK Maritime Trade Operations confirmed this incident.

Naval Forces Central Command (NAVCENT) announced on Sunday that a U.S. military operation successfully rescued the crew of a Greek-owned bulk carrier attacked by Yemen’s Houthi rebels in the Red Sea last week.

According to NAVCENT, a team from the Dwight D. Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group, which patrols the Red Sea, Gulf of Aden, and greater Eastern Mediterranean, airlifted the crew from the ship on Saturday.

However, one sailor aboard the MV Tutor remains unaccounted for, NAVCENT added.

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A Houthi spokesperson stated that these operations are dedicated to supporting their allies in Gaza.