Read it in full: Rishi Sunak's statement on 'targeted strikes' in Yemen

12 January 2024, 00:53 | Updated: 12 January 2024, 05:37

Rishi Sunak
Rishi Sunak. Picture: Alamy

By Emma Soteriou

Rishi Sunak has confirmed that the Royal Air Force carried out "targeted strikes" against Houthi facilities in Yemen.

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Mr Sunak's full statement read: "The Royal Air Force has carried out targeted strikes against military facilities used by Houthi rebels in Yemen.

"In recent months, the Houthi militia have carried out a series of dangerous and destabilising attacks against commercial shipping in the Red Sea, threatening UK and other international ships, causing major disruption to a vital trade route and driving up commodity prices.

"Their reckless actions are risking lives at sea and exacerbating the humanitarian crisis in Yemen.

"Despite the repeated warnings from the international community, the Houthis have continued to carry out attacks in the Red Sea, including against UK and US warships just this week.

"This cannot stand. The United Kingdom will always stand up for freedom of navigation and the free flow of trade.

"We have therefore taken limited, necessary and proportionate action in self-defence, alongside the United States with non-operational support from the Netherlands, Canada and Bahrain against targets tied to these attacks, to degrade Houthi military capabilities and protect global shipping.

"The Royal Navy continues to patrol the Red Sea as part of the multinational Operation Prosperity Guardian to deter further Houthi aggression, and we urge them to cease their attacks and take steps to de-escalate."

Read it in full: Joe Biden's statement on 'defensive strikes' in Yemen

Read more: Who are the Houthi rebels and what has led to increased tensions in the Middle East?