According to the US, a Norwegian tanker was hit by a missile fired by Houthi rebels off the coast of Yemen. The cruise missile hit the tanker “Strinda” while passing through the strait between the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden on Tuesday night (local time), causing damage and a fire, said US Central Command Centcom. But there are no reports of deaths or injuries.

The anti-ship cruise missile was fired from an area in Yemen controlled by the Houthi rebels, Centcom said on the short message service X, formerly Twitter. Accordingly, the Norwegian-flagged “Strinda” sent out a distress call and the US warship “USS Mason” rushed to the tanker to provide assistance.

Since the start of the war between Israel and Hamas, the Houthi militia in Yemen has fired drones and rockets at Israel on several occasions and attacked ships in the Red Sea. The Iranian-backed rebels threatened on Saturday with further attacks on ships in the Red Sea bound for Israel if humanitarian aid does not reach the Gaza Strip. The Houthi rebels see themselves as part of the self-proclaimed “Axis of Resistance” directed against Israel.

The Bab-al-Mandeb Strait, where the Strinda was attacked, lies between Djibouti and Yemen and connects the Red Sea with the Gulf of Aden. It is of great importance for global maritime trade, especially for the transport of petroleum.

The approximately 144 meter long “Strinda”, which belongs to the Norwegian company Mowinckel Chemical Tankers, was on its way to the Suez Canal, which connects the north of the Red Sea with the Mediterranean, at the time of the attack.