Houthis Say They Shot Down US MQ-9 Reaper Drone

The Houthis also struck a British cargo vessel as the US bombing campaign is failing to hurt their capabilities

Yemen’s Houthis said on Monday that their forces downed an American MQ-9 Reaper Drone that was flying over Yemen. US officials have acknowledged that a US drone crashed and say they’re investigating the cause.

“Yemeni air defenses were able to shoot down an American plane (MQ-9) with a suitable missile while it was carrying out hostile missions against our country on behalf of the Zionist entity,” Houthi military spokesman Yahya Sarea said in a statement, according to The New York Times.

“Yemeni armed forces will not hesitate to take more military measures and carry out more qualitative operations against all hostile targets in defense of beloved Yemen,” Sarea added.

The incident marks the second time a US MQ-9 Reaper drone was downed by the Houthis over Yemen since November.

The Houthis, officially known as Ansar Allah, also said on Monday that they struck a British-owned cargo ship in the Gulf of Aden, which was confirmed by US Central Command.

CENTCOM said two Houthi missiles were fired “toward MV Rubymar, a Belize-flagged, UK-owned bulk carrier. One of the missiles struck the vessel, causing damage.”

The Houthis later said they sank the British ship, and CENTCOM said the crew was evacuated from the Rubymar. The Houthis also claimed they targeted two American ships, but that has not yet been confirmed by the US.

The US has been bombing Houthi-controlled Yemen, where most of the country’s population lives, on a near-daily basis. The continued Houthi attacks demonstrate that the US strikes are not doing significant damage to Houthi capabilities and have only escalated the situation.

The Houthis have been clear that the only way their operations in the Red Sea will cease is if the US-backed Israeli onslaught in Gaza comes to an end.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of Antiwar.com, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.