UK warns against permanent closure of Red Sea

Yemen Monitor

Britain’s Defense Secretary, on Monday, stressed that the UK will not tolerate the permanent closure of the Red Sea to commercial shipping, leaving open the possibility of additional military actions against Houthi rebels in Yemen, Anadolu Agency reports.

Grant Shapps said on Monday that the recent US-led airstrikes against the Houthis were intended as a one-off measure to halt their attacks on commercial ships in the Red Sea.

“What I can tell you is, overall, we’ve made the point very clearly that although this was a distinct piece of precisely targeted military action, we will not put up with a major shipping lane being closed on a permanent basis,” he said in a speech at Lancaster House in central London.

He indicated that the US, UK and their international partners would carefully assess the actions of the rebels and evaluate whether further military interventions are necessary.

Shapps stressed the importance of scrutinising the connections between Iran and the Houthis, monitoring shipments, and gathering intelligence to prevent any threats to major waterways and shipping lanes.

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