Yemen’s Houthis Reject UN’s Call to Free UAE-Flagged Ship

Ship was loaded with weapons, Houthis note

Yemen’s Houthis have rejected a UN Security Council demand to release the UAE-flagged Rwabee, which it presented as a civilian cargo vessel, and said needed to be immediately released in the name of freedom of navigation in the Red Sea.

When the ship was taken earlier this month, the Saudis insisted it contained field hospital equipment and was purely civilian in nature. The unanimous UN Security Council statement roughly mirrored that claim.

This whole narrative was already discredited long ago. Almost immediately after the ship’s capture, the Houthis released photos and video footage showing that the ship was carrying, almost exclusively, weapons and armored vehicles, not hospital equipment.

A testament to Security Council members’ eagerness to keep the Saudis happy, the already falsified claim is just being stuck to for policy proclamations, and they’ll no doubt be angry that the Houthis didn’t release the shipload of weapons.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of