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Yemen’s Houthi Rebels Seize Saudi Arabian Ship in Red Sea

RIYADH – Yemeni Houthi rebels captured a Saudi Arabia tugboat on Sunday, according to the state-run Saudi Press Agency SPA.
Saudi military spokesman Colonel Turki al-Malki told a news conference that the ship was towing a South Korean drilling rig in the south of the Red Sea when it “went under hijacking and armed robbery by two ships.” He did not say how many members of the crew were on board.
According to the Houthi-run news agency, Al-Masirah, the Saudi ship has been captured within 3 miles (4.8 km) off Uqban Island and taken to the Salif port in western Yemen. The location of the other two ships was not recorded by Al-Masirah.
Among those captured were two South Koreans, Kim In-chul, a South Korean Foreign Ministry spokesman reported on Tuesday.
“The captive ship’s South Korean nationals are safe and healthy and notified to their families,” Kim said.
The Red Sea is a major oil shipping route, bordered to the north and west by the African nations of Egypt, Sudan, Eritrea and Djibouti, and to the east by Saudi Arabia and Yemen.
A U.S. official told CNN that Saudi Arabia’s government had notified the U.S. of the incident and said: “A Saudi-flagged ship was intercepted by armed men while operating in the territorial waters of Yemen.”
(Sahar News Monitoring Desk)

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