Iranian-backed Yemen Houthi rebels have hijacked a cargo vessel owned by Ray Shipping Ltd., which is owned by Israeli businessman Rami Ungar but is leased to a Japanese company. The Houthis had previously targeted Eilat with missiles that were intercepted by the Arrow.
The ship, called the Galaxy Leader, was carrying vehicles from Turkey oto India, when it was attacked and hijacked by the Houthis in the Red Sea, with 25 crew members on board - none of them Israeli. The ship's last location was near the coast of Yemen, yesterday.
IDF spokesperson Brigadier General Daniel Hagari confirmed there were no Israelis on board.
Not the first hijacking in the area
This is not the first time that a hijacking has been carried out on the critical maritime trade route in the Red Sea, which connects Europe and Asia and through which 10% of the world's cargoes pass. In 2021, Israel and other countries accused Iran of orchestrating an explosion on an Israeli-owned ship near the coast of Oman but Iran denied the allegations.
The Prime Minister's Office said, "We strongly condemn the Iranian attack on an international ship. The ship, owned by a British company and operated by a Japanese company, was hijacked on an Iranian whim by the Houthi militia in Yemen. On board the ship are 25 crew members of different nationalities, including: Ukrainians, Bulgarians, Filipinos and Mexicans. No Israelis were present on the ship. This is another act of Iranian terrorism which expresses an escalation in Iran's aggression against the citizens of the free world, and has international significance regarding the security of global shipping lanes."
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on November 19, 2023.
© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd., 2023.