Houthi spokesperson Yahya Saree claimed responsibility for targeting the vessel Mado with naval missiles but did not confirm hitting it. The attack was announced on Tuesday, though it might have occurred earlier. Mado has since left the Gulf of Aden en route to its destination.

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Mado, a 55,000 dwt liquid petroleum gas carrier, is operated by a Greek LPG shipping specialist. It flies a flag from an open registry based in Virginia, USA, but has no apparent ties to the United States. Houthi forces have previously targeted ships linked to Greece, Lebanon, Iran, Russia, and even Yemen.

LPG carriers typically transport propane or butane, both highly flammable. In the past, an Iranian rocket strike on the Gaz Fountain during the Iran-Iraq war caused a butane fire after rupturing one of the vessel's tanks. The crew escaped safely, and the ship and most of its cargo survived.

Houthis have damaged several vessels, sinking one and resulting in three deaths. Despite condemnation, including from the UN Security Council, Houthi leaders vow to continue attacks until Israel halts operations in Gaza.