Yemen rebels who hijacked an Israeli-linked cargo ship in the Red Sea were backed, supported and potentially trained by Iranian authorities, according to a U.S. official.
New photos of the helicopter-borne Houthi attack on the Galaxy Leader, a cargo vessel linked to Israeli billionaire Abraham “Rami” Ungar, shows “all the signs” that Iran was behind the operation, an American defense official told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.
“This has all the signs these people were trained by a professional military, which could clearly be Iran,” the defense official said. “This looks like something we haven’t seen before.”
On Sunday, the Yemen rebel group seized the ship as it was traveling from Turkey to India. The rebels, carrying rifles and dressed in commando-style bulletproof vests, covered each other and moved in military formation before they quickly seized control of the bridge of the Galaxy Leader. The Israel Defense Forces described the hijacking as “a very grave incident of global consequence.”
This photo released by the Houthi Media Center shows Houthi forces boarding the cargo ship Galaxy Leader on Sunday,