Plaid Cymru MP warns Red Sea strikes are ‘endangering’ UK seafarers
Plaid Cymru’s Westminster leader Liz Saville Roberts has warned the Prime Minister that: “A scramble towards military action is endangering UK seafarers in the Red Sea.
Her comments came as MPs discussed the UK Government’s backing for military strikes on Houthi targets in Yemen, which were launched alongside the US on Thursday, and without parliamentary approval.
Earlier today (15 January) An anti-ship ballistic missile fired by Iran-backed Houthi militants struck a Marshall Islands-flagged, US-owned and operated container ship while it was sailing 100 miles off the Gulf of Aden .
The dry bulk vessel Gibraltar Eagle has reported no injuries or significant damage and is continuing its journey.
“Maritime unions are calling for not just more protection, but they stress the need for co-ordinated diplomatic efforts to resolve the crisis,” the MP for Dwyfor Meirionnydd said.
“After today’s attack on a ship, can he explain to seafarers how dropping bombs will lead to a de-escalation of a situation which is already endangering their safety?”
Rishi Sunak said: “I think that’s quite extraordinary – it is Houthi rockets that are endangering the lives of British seafarers in the region.”
He added: “We are acting in self-defence to protect the lives of seafarers, not endanger them, and she would do well to call out the Houthis to stop what they are doing.”
Pontypridd Labour MP Alex Davies-Jones called for the Prime minister to condemn the Houthi rebel group that initially launched attacks on shipping in the Red Sea in November.
The Shia militant group is allied to Iran and seeks to reduce western influence in the Middle East
Ms Davies Jones the Commons: “The Houthis are an antisemitic terrorist group that have caused havoc in Yemen over the past decade, starting a civil war that has killed over 350,000 people.
“Its slogan includes the lines ‘Death to America, death to Israel, a curse upon the Jews’. Will the Prime Minister join me in condemning the shameful pro-Houthi chanting that we saw at many protests in the UK over the weekend?”
Mr Sunak replied: “Can I commend the honourable lady for her remarks and can I wholeheartedly agree with her. We will absolutely not tolerate that kind of language on our streets, we have been crystal clear about that.
“We’ve said to the police that they should take all decisive action against those that promote and encourage terrorism, and indeed those that incite hatred and division on our streets.”
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