Incident Alert – Potential Explosion Reported – Southern Red Sea
Date: 03 December 2023 0610 UTC
Position: Lat 13°57’59″ N Long 42°18’00” E
Location: 65Nm Southwest of Hodiedah, Yemen
The UKMTO has released Warning 001/DEC/2023 following the report of Uncrewed Aerial Systems (UAS) activity including a potential explosion in the vicinity the Hanish Islands in the Bab el Mandeb Strait. The report states the activity originated from the direction of Yemen.
Further reporting has identified a Bulk carrier transiting to the West of the Hanish Islands, as the source of the drone sighting. Unconfirmed reports state the drone exploded 2Nm from the vessel. The crew onboard the vessel are reported to be safe and have moved to the citadel. It is not known at this time if the vessel is linked in any way to Israel.
It is not clear if this is a further incident linked to the Houthis and if the vessel that reported the sighting was the intended target of the drone. If it is confirmed that this was a drone attack on an Israeli -linked vessel, this will indicate a new threat for vessels transiting the Southern Red Sea as previous drone attacks against Israeli-linked vessels have taken place in the eastern Gulf of Oman and Arabian Sea.