Monday, January 22, 2024

Houthis Say They Exempt Russia and China from Red Sea Attacks: Lots of Luck

 The New Arab published on 19 January 2024 an article titled "Houthis Grant 'Safe Passages' for Russia, Chinese Vessels Amid Red Sea Chaos."

A spokesperson for the Iranian-backed Houthis in Yemen said Russian and Chinese vessels will be granted safe passage through the Red Sea.  In fact, the Houthis claim they are only attacking "Israel-affiliated ships" and those from the United States and United Kingdom.

The Voice of America published on 19 January 2024 an article titled "China Urges End of 'Harassment' of Vessels in Red Sea."

A Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson said the attacks must stop "in order to maintain the smooth flow of global production and supply chains and the international trade order."

Comment:  While there have been no known Houthi attacks against Chinese or Russian vessels, the attacks have been indiscriminate and impacted ships unrelated to Israel.  One has to wonder if the Houthis have any idea who owns and crews the hundreds of ships that pass each week through the southern end of the Red Sea.  The fact that China is calling for an end to the attacks suggests it is not satisfied that its ships will be exempt.  In addition, China's giant COSCO shipping company has suspended transport through the Red Sea.