British warship 'successfully repels' Houthi drone attack, Ministry of Defence says

HMS Diamond, pictured here in 2021, is currently operating in the Red Sea. Credit: PA

The crew of a British warship operating in the Red Sea 'successfully repelled' a drone attack from Houthi rebels on Saturday.

None of the crew were injured and the HMS Diamond wasn't damaged, the Ministry of Defence said in a statement. The warship shot the drone down using its Sea Viper missile system.

In a statement the Ministry of Defence said: "These intolerable and illegal attacks are completely unacceptable and it is our duty to protect the freedom of navigation in the Red Sea."

"We want to thank the brave crew of HMS Diamond for their service to defend British and international interests."

Grant Shapps has said the UK remains “undaunted” after Iran-backed Houthis targeted the HMS Diamond in the Red Sea during their latest round of strikes.

Crew on the ship shot down a drone deployed by the Yemen-based group, which appears undeterred despite UK-US military action against the rebels earlier this week.

No injuries or damage were sustained, the Ministry of Defence said. In a post on X, Mr Shapps wrote: “The UK remains undaunted after yesterday’s illegal attack on @HMSDiamond by the Iranian backed Houthis.

"Our commitment to protect innocent lives and the freedom of navigation is absolutely unwavering.”

It's not the first time HMS Diamond has been targeted by the Houthis since it began operating in the area. A number of drones were shot down by the vessel and a US counterpart two weeks ago.

That attack was responded to by joint US-UK airstrikes on Houthi positions in Yemen, which have since continued.

The Iranian backed militant group, which took control over much of Yemen during its civil war, claims to be targeting ships headed for Israel as a way of supporting Palestinians in Gaza. The UK and US have rejected this and says their forces are acting to protect commercial shipping and uphold the freedom of navigation.

In one such attack, crew aboard an oil tanker off the coast of Yemen spent Friday night and Saturday morning fighting a fire caused by a missile strike.

The vessel was operated on behalf of multinational company Trafigura, which has offices in London and is domiciled in Singapore.

French forces based in the UAE and Indian Ocean said that it took 20 hours for the fire to be brought under control.

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