BREAKING: US and UK carry out strikes on Houthi targets in Yemen

The US and UK have initiated strikes on targets in Yemen in response to Houthi attacks in the Red Sea, as confirmed by a U.S. official to CBS News on Thursday night. The Iranian-backed Houthis have been conducting a series of drone and missile attacks in the Red Sea since the outset of the Israel-Hamas conflict.

On Tuesday, the Houthis carried out one of the most significant attacks in the Red Sea. According to U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), three US destroyers, accompanied by U.S. F-18s and a British warship, successfully intercepted and downed 18 drones and multiple missiles launched from Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen.

Referred to as a "complex attack" by CENTCOM, this event took place within a week of a collective statement released by the U.S. and several other countries. The statement cautioned the Houthis about potential repercussions should they continue their attacks.

Last Wednesday, the White House released the joint statement, stating, "The Houthis will bear the responsibility of the consequences should they continue to threaten lives, the global economy, and the free flow of commerce in the region's critical waterways."

A congressional source said on Thursday that the Biden administration had briefed congressional leaders on plans to conduct strikes on Houthi rebel targets in Yemen according to CBS News.

Biden issued a statement following the retaliatory attack, saying 

"These strikes are in direct response to unprecedented Houthi attacks against international maritime vessels in the Red Sea—including the use of anti-ship ballistic missiles for the first time in history. These attacks have endangered U.S. personnel, civilian mariners, and our partners, jeopardized trade, and threatened freedom of navigation. More than 50 nations have been affected in 27 attacks on international commercial shipping. Crews from more than 20 countries have been threatened or taken hostage in acts of piracy. More than 2,000 ships have been forced to divert thousands of miles to avoid the Red Sea—which can cause weeks of delays in product shipping times. And on January 9, Houthis launched their largest attack to date—directly targeting American ships."

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