Yemen’s Houthis Seize Ship Full of Arms Off Coast

Saudis condemn 'act of piracy'

Off the coast of Hodeidah port, Yemen’s Houthis seized a ship, the UAE-flagged Rwabee. They said it entered Yemen’s territorial waters without authorization.

The Saudi narrative is that this was an innocent ship relocating medical supplies from Socotra. They are presenting the Houthi action as an act of piracy, and demanding the immediate release of the ship.

The Houthis released photos and video of the ship, showing cargo almost entirely military in nature, including weapons, vehicles, and other war material. There was a lot of equipment, far from the claim of a torn down field hospital.

It again seems to support the Houthi narrative, of a ship entering Yemen’s waters with military purpose, and far from piracy, this seizure being a military action to prevent an arms shipment into the area of contested Hodeidah.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.