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Houthis claim latest US-UK Yemen strikes won’t go unanswered as Israel says 21 soldiers killed in Gaza - live

Houthi rebels have vowed that the latest round of US and UK strikes against them in Yemen will no go unanswered - as their allies Hamas killed nearly two dozen Israeli soldiers in Gaza.

The US launched their eighth attack on Houthi positions in western Yemen overnight, firing up to 30 munitions. UK defence secretary Grant Shapps said four Royal Air Force (RAF) Typhoons were involved in the strikes.

Mohammad Ali al-Houthi, head of the Houthi’s supreme revolutionary committee wrote on X, after the joint strikes by the US and the UK: “Trust well that every operation and every aggression against our country will not be without a response”.

It comes as 21 soldiers have been killed  in the Gaza Strip in the deadliest attack on Israel’s forces since the 7 October Hamas raid that triggered the war, the military has said.

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu mourned the soldiers but vowed to press ahead with the offensive until "absolute victory" over Hamas was achieved.

The soldiers were killed after a militant fired a rocket-propelled grenade at a tank stationed next to two buildings being prepared for demolition. The area was packed with explosives.

Key Points

  • UK and US launch fresh airstrikes against Houthi targets in Yemen

  • Cameron: Strikes show UK ‘backs up words with action’

  • Houthi leader promises ‘response’ to latest airstrikes

  • UK defence secretary says latest round of airstrikes ‘deal another blow’ to Houthis

  • MoD says four Royal Air Force Typhoons and two Voyager tankers used in joint airstrikes against Houthis

RAF Typhoon jets take off from Cyprus to conduct second ‘targeted strikes’ in Yemen

17:34 , Tom Watling

RAF Typhoon and voyagers take off from RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus to conduct precision strike operations against Houthi military targets in response to further attacks on shipping in the Red Sea.

The strikes on Monday (22 January) were launched against the Iranian-backed group after they started targeting ships in the Red Sea, a key international trade route, and follow bombings on Houthi sites on January 11.

Four Royal Air Force Typhoon FGR4s, supported by a pair of Voyager tankers, joined US forces in a strike against Houthi sites. The aircraft used Paveway IV precision-guided bombs to strike multiple targets at two military sites in the vicinity of Sanaa airfield.

RAF Typhoon jets take off from Cyprus to conduct second ‘targeted strikes’ in Yemen

Britain to announce new sanctions against Houthis in coming days - PM Sunak

16:58 , Tom Watling

Britain plans to announce new sanctions in the coming days targeting Houthi financing of attacks on shipping in the Red Sea, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said on Tuesday.

US and British forces carried out a fresh round of strikes on Monday in Yemen, targeting a Houthi underground storage site as well as missile and surveillance capabilities used by the Iran-aligned group.

“We’re going to use the most effective means at our disposal to cut off the Houthi‘s financial resources, where they are used to fund these attacks,” Sunak told parliament.

“We are working closely with the United States on this and plan to announce new sanctions measures in the coming days.”

Sunak also said British Foreign Secretary David Cameron would visit the Middle East this week.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak making a statement on Houthi maritime attacks in the Red Sea (PA)
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak making a statement on Houthi maritime attacks in the Red Sea (PA)

Sunak has no choice but to strike the Houthis – but don’t expect it to make much difference

16:24 , Tom Watling

Downing Street and the White House cannot let attacks on the key Red Sea shipping route continue at this rate, but they will be wary of such action spiralling, writes Chris Stevenson

Don’t expect the Houthi strikes to end – but the UK and US have to keep pressure up

EU may struggle to sanction violent Israeli settlers - Luxembourg's Bettel

15:30 , Tom Watling

The European Union may struggle to reach agreement on a push by some member states to impose sanctions on Israeli settlers responsible for violence against Palestinians in the West Bank, Luxembourg Foreign Minister Xavier Bettel said.

In an interview with Reuters in Brussels, Bettel recalled that the European Union leaders argued for hours about even small differences in language when it came to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

“So having sanctions against settlers might be difficult,” he said, while making clear he favoured such measures.

“It is important that impunity cannot be accepted and violent settlers have to be punished and if they (Israeli authorities) don’t do it, we need to do it.”

Sunak outlines 'pathway to peace' in Israel-Hamas war

15:00 , Tom Watling

Six Palestinians were killed at a UN-run shelter in Gaza - UNRWA chief

14:35 , Tom Watling

Six displaced Palestinian were killed when one of the United Nations-run shelters was hit in Khan Younis, the focus of Israel‘s ground offensive, in the southern Gaza Strip, a day ago, the head of the UN aid agency for Palestinians said.

“Terrified staff, patients, and displaced people are now trapped inside the few remaining hospitals in Khan Younis as heavy fighting continues,” Philippe Lazzarine, UNRWA’s general commissioner said in a post on X on Tuesday.

Lazzarine said at least six of the displaced were killed and more others were wounded in the incident.

“I call on all parties to take every precaution to minimize harm and protect civilians, medical facilities and personnel and @UN premises in accordance with international law,” he added.

The Israeli army did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Houthi strikes: Rishi Sunak says will not hesitate to act if need to again

14:00 , Tom Watling

Keir Starmer was not told about strikes in advance, Downing Street

13:30 , Tom Watling

Sir Keir Starmer was not told in advance of Monday night’s strikes against Houthi rebels in the Red Sea.

The Labour leader was given a heads up before the first round of UK strikes against the Iran-backed group attacking cargo ships in the region.

But, despite initial confusion over whether he was this time, Downing Street confirmed Sir Keir was told “at the time of the strikes”, not before they were launched.

Rishi Sunak’s spokesman said: “Our preference will always be to inform the Leader of the Opposition and Speaker in advance where operational security and strike timelines allow.

“That wasn’t a possibility in this instance.”

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer responds following Prime Minister Rishi Sunak statement to MPs in the House of Commons, London (PA)
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer responds following Prime Minister Rishi Sunak statement to MPs in the House of Commons, London (PA)

Labour backs strikes in Yemen

12:52 , Tom Watling

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has told the Commons his party supports the latest strikes on Rishi Houthi rebels in Yemen.

He told MPs: “We back this targeted action.”

He also said he “totally” rejected the idea the attacks were linked to Gaza.

But he called on ministers to again release their legal justification for their action.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has told the Commons his party supports the latest strikes on Rishi Houthi rebels in Yemen (Getty Images)
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has told the Commons his party supports the latest strikes on Rishi Houthi rebels in Yemen (Getty Images)

Downing Street: Initial strikes on Houthis were effective

12:47 , Tom Watling

Downing Street has insisted the UK’s initial strikes were effective against the Houthi rebels in the Red Sea, “degrading their capabilities”.

Questioned about why more strikes were necessary, if the first acted as deterrents, Rishi Sunak’s spokesman said the first attack would never be “sufficient to completely stop these indiscriminate attacks”.

And the spokesman insisted that the “evidence so far” is that Monday night’s strikes were also effective.

No10 said they destroyed targets and degraded the capabilities of the Iran-backed Houthis.

Sunak lays out plan for Houthi conflict

12:44 , Tom Watling

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has laid out his four-part plan for dealing with continue Houthi strikes in the Red Sea.

Addressing the House of Commons, he said: “First, we are increasing our diplomatic engagement as we recognise the deep concerns and the complexities of the current situation.

“Second, We must end the illegal flow of arms to the Houthi militia. We must disrupt and deter the supply of weapons.

“Third, we are going to use the most effective means at our disposal to cut off the Houthis financial resources where they are used to fund these attacks. We plan to announce new sanction packages in the coming days.

“Fourth, we need to keep helping the people of Yemen who have suffered so terribly as a result of the country’s civil war. We will continue to deliver humanitarian aid and support a negotiated peace in that conflict, not just because it is the right thing to do, but also because we need to show the people of Yemen that we have no quarrel with them, as the Yemeni government understands.”

He added: “We will keep all other tools under close review as well.”

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak speaks in the House of Commons after the latest bombing in Yemen (Parliament TV)
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak speaks in the House of Commons after the latest bombing in Yemen (Parliament TV)

UKMTO receives reports of uncrewed aerial system activity in the vicinity of Yemen's Mokha

12:11 , Tom Watling

The United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations (UKMTO) agency said on Tuesday that it received a reports of uncrewed aerial system activity in the vicinity of 46 nautical miles south of Yemen’s Mokha.

Authorities are investigating, UKMTO added.

Gaza health ministry updates death toll

11:16 , Tom Watling

A total of 25,490 Palestinians have been killed and 63,354 have been injured in Israeli strikes on Gaza since 7 October, the Gaza health ministry has said.

At least 195 Palestinians were killed and 354 injured in the past 24 hours, the ministry added.

Mediation efforts on Gaza ongoing, Qatar foreign ministry says

10:55 , Tom Watling

Mediation efforts on ending the war in the Gaza Strip are ongoing, Qatar’s foreign ministry spokesman has said.

Separately, he added that escalation in the Red Sea represented a “big danger”, speaking a day after US and British forces carried out fresh strikes against Yemen’s Iran-aligned Houthi fighters who have disrupted global shipping in protest over Israel’s bombardment of Gaza.

US and UK strikes won’t stop Houthi attacks in Red Sea, experts warn

10:15 , Tom Watling

US and UK strikes on Houthi fighters in Yemen will not deter the Iranian-backed group from attacking ships in the Red Sea, experts have warned, as tensions spike across the Middle East.

While the US has launched at least seven rounds of strikes against Houthi positions in Yemen – with the UK also involved in the first strikes last week – experts have told The Independent that the strikes amount merely to a short-term solution to a problem that requires a long-term answer.

US and UK strikes won’t stop Houthi attacks in Red Sea, experts warn

ICYMI: UK and US launch fresh airstrikes against Houthi targets in Yemen

09:45 , Maroosha Muzaffar

The UK and the US have launched fresh airstrikes against Houthi targets in Yemen.

Officials say the joint operation by British and American warplanes took out Houthi missile storage sites and launchers, in the second set of coordinated strikes against the Iran-backed militants since they began attacking international shipping in the Red Sea.

In a joint statement, the governments of the US, UK, Bahrain, Australia, Canada and the Netherlands said the “precision strikes” were “intended to disrupt and degrade the capabilities that the Houthis use to threaten global trade and the lives of innocent mariners”.

US Central Command also said the strikes targeted “areas in Houthi-controlled Yemen used to attack international merchant vessels and US Navy ships in the region,” including such specific targets as “missile systems and launchers, air defence systems, radars, and deeply buried weapons storage facilities”.

The joint airstrikes follow a telephone conversation between prime minister Rishi Sunak and US president Joe Biden on Monday evening, with the two leaders undertaking to “continue efforts alongside international partners to deter and disrupt” attacks by Houthis.

UK and US launch fresh airstrikes against Houthi targets in Yemen

Houthi leader promises ‘response’ to latest airstrikes

09:15 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Mohammad Ali al-Houthi, head of the Houthi’s supreme revolutionary committee wrote on X, after the joint strikes by the US and the UK: “Trust well that every operation and every aggression against our country will not be without a response”.

Mohammed Albukhaiti, a member of the Houthis’ ruling council, insisted the group will continue its attacks and defy the West.

“The American-British aggression will only increase the Yemeni people’s determination to carry out their moral and humanitarian responsibilities towards the oppressed in Gaza. The war today is between Yemen, which is struggling to stop the crimes of genocide, and the American-British coalition to support and protect its perpetrators,” he said.

Which fighter jets and bombs are being used to strike Houthi rebel sites?

08:45 , Maroosha Muzaffar

The UK’s Royal Air Force joined US forces in bombing military facilities used by Houthi rebels in Yemen for a second time.

Four Royal Air Force Typhoon FGR4s, supported by a pair of Voyager tankers, joined US forces in a strike against Houthi sites. The aircraft used Paveway IV precision-guided bombs to strike multiple targets at two military sites in the vicinity of Sanaa airfield.

Here the PA news agency looks at the powerful fighter jets, weapons and warships the UK military has sent to the region:

Which fighter jets and bombs are being used to strike Houthi rebel sites?

Watch: RAF Typhoon jets take off from Cyprus

08:30 , Adam Withnall

The MoD has released footage of RAF Typhoon and voyagers taking off from RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus to conduct precision strike operations against Houthi military targets in response to further attacks on shipping in the Red Sea.

The strikes on Monday (22 January) were launched against the Iranian-backed group after they started targeting ships in the Red Sea, a key international trade route, and follow bombings on Houthi sites on 11 January.

RAF Typhoon jets take off from Cyprus to conduct second ‘targeted strikes’ in Yemen

Labour Party not briefed ahead of fresh allied strikes

08:15 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Karin Smyth, a shadow health minister, has confirmed the Labour Party had not been briefed ahead of fresh allied strikes against Houthi targets in Yemen.

Speaking to GB News, Ms Smyth said: “We don’t know why the government haven’t spoken to us on the usual terms.

“We would expect them to do that.

“We would certainly expect a statement by the prime minister today in Parliament, so we will await developments on that.

Tory minister: Latest strikes are ‘not just a one off’

07:55 , Archie Mitchell

Huw Merriman has said the latest air strikes in the Red Sea will “not just be a one-off” if the Houthis continue to attack cargo ships in the region.

Asked on Sky News if he could rule out the UK joining in with further military action against the rebel militant group in Yemen, Mr Merriman said: “Of course not. We will always back up our words with action.

“But this action again demonstrates that this would not just be a one-off if the Houthis continue.

“That would be the wrong thing to do. For us to take action and then the Houthis respond, and then we do nothing, would send out the completely wrong signal.

“So, this demonstrates that we will be tough and we will take all measures required against the Houthis to protect international shipping and protect the lives of those who operate those ships.”

Who are Yemen’s Houthis and why are they attacking ships in the Red Sea?

07:45 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Yemen’s Shia Houthis are part of Iran’s ‘axis of resistance’ dedicated to the destruction of Israel. How are they linked to the conflict between Israel and Palestine, and why are they attacking western ships now?

Read about it here:

Who are Yemen’s Houthis and why are they attacking ships in the Red Sea?

Lord Cameron: ‘We back our words and warnings with action’

07:43 , Archie Mitchell

Lord Cameron has again condemned Houthi attacks on shipping vessels in the Red Sea, warning that Britain will “continue” to degrade the rebel group’s capabilities.

The foreign secretary said: “Since we last took action 10 days ago, there have been over 12 attacks on shipping by the Houthis in the Red Sea.

“These attacks are illegal, unacceptable. And what we’ve done again is send the clearest possible message that we will continue to degrade their ability to carry out these attacks - while sending the clearest possible message that we back our words and our warnings with action.”

MoD says four Royal Air Force Typhoons and two Voyager tankers used in joint airstrikes against Houthis

07:15 , Maroosha Muzaffar

The UK and the US launched fresh airstrikes against Houthi targets in Yemen on Monday.

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) said that four Royal Air Force Typhoons and a pair of Voyager tankers were involved in the latest military strike.

The joint airstrikes saw multiple targets hit at two military sites near the Sanaa airfield in Yemen.

A statement from the Pentagon said the bombing was “proportionate and necessary”.

The MoD says that the Iran-backed Houthi rebel group has carried out more than 30 attacks on international shipping since mid-November.

“Our aircraft used Paveway IV precision guided bombs to strike multiple targets at two military sites in the vicinity of Sanaa airfield. These locations were being used to enable the continued intolerable attacks against international shipping in the Red Sea,” the MoD said.

“In line with UK standard practice, a very rigorous analysis was applied in planning the strikes to minimise any risk of civilian casualties, and as with the previous strikes, our aircraft bombed at night to mitigate yet further any such risks,” it added.

US fighter jets from the USS Eisenhower carrier also took part in the strikes on Monday.

Houthi leader promises ‘response’ to latest airstrikes

06:45 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Mohammad Ali al-Houthi, head of the Houthi’s supreme revolutionary committee wrote on X, after the joint strikes by the US and the UK: “Trust well that every operation and every aggression against our country will not be without a response”.

Mohammed Albukhaiti, a member of the Houthis’ ruling council, insisted the group will continue its attacks and defy the West.

“The American-British aggression will only increase the Yemeni people’s determination to carry out their moral and humanitarian responsibilities towards the oppressed in Gaza. The war today is between Yemen, which is struggling to stop the crimes of genocide, and the American-British coalition to support and protect its perpetrators,” he said.

UK and US launch fresh airstrikes against Houthi targets in Yemen

06:15 , Maroosha Muzaffar

The UK and the US have launched fresh airstrikes against Houthi targets in Yemen.

Officials say the joint operation by British and American warplanes took out Houthi missile storage sites and launchers, in the second set of coordinated strikes against the Iran-backed militants since they began attacking international shipping in the Red Sea.

In a joint statement, the governments of the US, UK, Bahrain, Australia, Canada and the Netherlands said the “precision strikes” were “intended to disrupt and degrade the capabilities that the Houthis use to threaten global trade and the lives of innocent mariners”.

US Central Command also said the strikes targeted “areas in Houthi-controlled Yemen used to attack international merchant vessels and US Navy ships in the region,” including such specific targets as “missile systems and launchers, air defence systems, radars, and deeply buried weapons storage facilities”.

The joint airstrikes follow a telephone conversation between prime minister Rishi Sunak and US president Joe Biden on Monday evening, with the two leaders undertaking to “continue efforts alongside international partners to deter and disrupt” attacks by Houthis.

Who are Yemen’s Houthis and why are they attacking ships in the Red Sea?

05:45 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Yemen’s Shia Houthis are part of Iran’s ‘axis of resistance’ dedicated to the destruction of Israel. How are they linked to the conflict between Israel and Palestine, and why are they attacking western ships now?

Read about it here:

Who are Yemen’s Houthis and why are they attacking ships in the Red Sea?

Houthi leader promises ‘response’ to latest airstrikes

05:43 , Maroosha Muzaffar

Mohammad Ali al-Houthi, head of the Houthi’s supreme revolutionary committee wrote on X, after the joint strikes by the US and the UK: “Trust well that every operation and every aggression against our country will not be without a response”.

Mohammed Albukhaiti, a member of the Houthis’ ruling council, insisted the group will continue its attacks and defy the West.

“The American-British aggression will only increase the Yemeni people’s determination to carry out their moral and humanitarian responsibilities towards the oppressed in Gaza. The war today is between Yemen, which is struggling to stop the crimes of genocide, and the American-British coalition to support and protect its perpetrators,” he said.

MoD says four Royal Air Force Typhoons and two Voyager tankers used in joint airstrikes against Houthis

05:15 , Maroosha Muzaffar

The UK and the US launched fresh airstrikes against Houthi targets in Yemen on Monday.

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) said that four Royal Air Force Typhoons and a pair of Voyager tankers were involved in the latest military strike.

The joint airstrikes saw multiple targets hit at two military sites near the Sanaa airfield in Yemen.

A statement from the Pentagon said the bombing was “proportionate and necessary”.

The MoD says that the Iran-backed Houthi rebel group has carried out more than 30 attacks on international shipping since mid-November.

“Our aircraft used Paveway IV precision guided bombs to strike multiple targets at two military sites in the vicinity of Sanaa airfield. These locations were being used to enable the continued intolerable attacks against international shipping in the Red Sea,” the MoD said.

“In line with UK standard practice, a very rigorous analysis was applied in planning the strikes to minimise any risk of civilian casualties, and as with the previous strikes, our aircraft bombed at night to mitigate yet further any such risks,” it added.

US fighter jets from the USS Eisenhower carrier also took part in the strikes on Monday.

UK defence secretary says latest round of airstrikes ‘deal another blow’ to Houthis

04:45 , Maroosha Muzaffar

UK defence secretary Grant Shapps said the latest round of air strikes against Houthi targets in Yemen were in “self-defence” and would “deal another blow” to the Iranian-backed militants.

It is the UK’s second participation in a joint operation with the US against the Houthis.

Mr Shapps said: “Dangerous Houthi attacks on shipping in the Red Sea have continued to threaten the lives of sailors and disrupt shipping at an intolerable cost to the global economy. Along with our US partners, we have conducted a further round of strikes in self-defence.”

He added: “Aimed at degrading Houthi capabilities, this action will deal another blow to their limited stockpiles and ability to threaten global trade. Alongside our ongoing diplomatic efforts, we will continue to support regional stability across the Middle East, working hand in hand with our like-minded partners.”

The MoD said that four Royal Air Force Typhoons and a pair of Voyager tankers were involved in the latest military strike, which it said saw multiple targets hit at two military sites near the Sanaa airfield in Yemen.

UK and US launch fresh airstrikes against Houthi targets in Yemen

04:18 , Maroosha Muzaffar

The UK and the US have launched fresh airstrikes against Houthi targets in Yemen.

Officials say the joint operation by British and American warplanes took out Houthi missile storage sites and launchers, in the second set of coordinated strikes against the Iran-backed militants since they began attacking international shipping in the Red Sea.

In a joint statement, the governments of the US, UK, Bahrain, Australia, Canada and the Netherlands said the “precision strikes” were “intended to disrupt and degrade the capabilities that the Houthis use to threaten global trade and the lives of innocent mariners”.

US Central Command also said the strikes targeted “areas in Houthi-controlled Yemen used to attack international merchant vessels and US Navy ships in the region,” including such specific targets as “missile systems and launchers, air defence systems, radars, and deeply buried weapons storage facilities”.

The joint airstrikes follow a telephone conversation between prime minister Rishi Sunak and US president Joe Biden on Monday evening, with the two leaders undertaking to “continue efforts alongside international partners to deter and disrupt” attacks by Houthis.