President Biden said Saturday that the United States has “privately” delivered a message to Iran over its backing of Houthis targeting commercial vessels in the Red Sea.
As he was heading to Camp David for the weekend, Biden was asked Saturday what message was being sent to Iran through a pair of attacks targeting dozens of facilities in Yemen controlled by the Tehran proxies.
“We delivered it privately and we’re confident we’re well prepared,” the president answered.
The response was an apparent attempt to reiterate his Friday comment when Biden said that the American military’s initial strikes on Houthi targets had “already delivered the message to Iran …. They know not to do anything.”
On Friday, US officials said the Navy destroyer USS Carney had fired off Tomahawk land missiles that struck a Houthi radar site being used to target ships in the Red Sea.
The attack was described as a “follow-on action…to degrade the Houthis’ ability to attack maritime vessels, including commercial vessels,” Central Command wrote on X.
Friday’s attack followed a wider air raid Thursday led by American and British forces, which blitzed over 60 Houthi targets across 28 locations in Yemen, killing at least five and wounding six others.
The series of attacks were conducted in response to a missile and drone strike campaign by Houthis targeting commercial vessels in the Red Sea.
The Houthis, who control most of northern Yemen, have vowed retaliation, with spokesman Nasruldeen Amer telling Al Jazeera that “this new strike will have a firm, strong and effective response.”
Another Houthi spokesman, Mohammed Abdulsalam, downplayed the strikes’ damage, saying they wouldn’t deter the rebels from continuing their assaults on vessels crossing the Red Sea.
Iran officials had insisted Thursday’s strikes were “a clear violation of Yemen’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and a breach of international laws.”
The escalating Red Sea tensions come amid concerns about a growing regional conflict in the Middle East amid the Israel-Hamas war.
With Post wires.