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Plaid Cymru MP warns Red Sea strikes are ‘endangering’ UK seafarers

15 Jan 2024 3 minute read
Liz Saville Roberts MP. Photo UK Parliament/Jessica Taylor

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?”

‘Extraordinary’

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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robin campbell
robin campbell
1 month ago

Wouldn’t it be better for the honourable lady for Pontypridd to try and de-escalate the situation by calling for a ceasefire in Gaza?

Mawkernewek
Mawkernewek
1 month ago

Why is a Labour MP using parliamentary time asking such a soft question? Isn’t that the job of the Tories own MPs?

Rob
Rob
1 month ago
Reply to  Mawkernewek

I agree. She should be using time to focus on matters that directly affect
her constituents and not blindly supporting the UK/US whenever military action is taken.

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
1 month ago

In 1839 Britain captured the port of Aden to guard the lines of communication with India…What a mash-up of coincidence…

In 1967 my old shipmate was aboard HMS Albion, her helicopters were evacuating the Brits. He told me all about it…

Riki
Riki
1 month ago
Reply to  Mab Meirion

English! You and I are “The Brits”

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
1 month ago
Reply to  Riki

The last Serviceman to leave Aden in 1967 and board HMS Albion was Lt Col Dai Morgan, CO of 42 Commando…you could not make it up eh Riki…

Last edited 1 month ago by Mab Meirion
Johnny Gamble
Johnny Gamble
1 month ago

What Ms Davies Jones has failed to mention is that a contributing factor to 350,000 deaths in Yemen has been Weapons used from Saudi Arabia produced by The UK and their US masters.
This is just another piece of evidence that a Starmer Government will be no different to The Conservative Party.

Last edited 1 month ago by Johnny Gamble
Richard Davies
Richard Davies
1 month ago
Reply to  Johnny Gamble

In addition to weapons produced in uk, there are british military people in saudi arabia giving support. The bombs are being dropped from british supplied planes. Britain should not be giving all this support to the despicable regime!

hdavies15
hdavies15
1 month ago

UK has been supplying armaments to Saudis and others for years and these have been used to bombard and kill Yemenis of all persuasions. Sunak couldn’t give a s*it about the local politics or the population of Yemen. He just wants to sell more bombs and military kit. All this chatter about protecting shipping is a load of typical bollox from the little man who is in the job to protect vested interests.

Rob
Rob
1 month ago

I condemn Hamas, the Houthis and any kind of antisemitism. However as long as we keep blindly supporting Israel in their genocide in Gaza, then support for these kind of militias are going to get more and more stronger across the Middle East. One man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter.

Riki
Riki
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

Yeah, but I think they wouldn’t mind that as it validates their insane position to keep forever wars going.

Riki
Riki
1 month ago

You wouldn’t need to act in “Self Defence” if you had not given your full support to genocide. These people are are clearly insane, it’s like running up to two people in the street and getting involved in their altercation, only for you to be given a whack! And then crying when you do! What did you expect? A Cwtch and a kiss?!

Midge0
Midge0
1 month ago

Every time Roberts speaks, she reminds me why I don’t support Plaid Cymru. She’s either a great devil’s advocate or has completely the wrong end of the stick. I suspect the latter.

Last edited 1 month ago by Midge0
Richard Davies
Richard Davies
1 month ago

The Houthi “rebels” wouldn’t even exist but for the uae and saudi arabia. The two countries employed american mercenaries to assassinate their political enemies in Yemen. So it’s no surprise the Houthi are launching attacks against anything remotely connected to the usa.

The bbc were due to broadcast documentary about this on 15 Jan but it was pulled from the schedule.

Richard Davies
Richard Davies
1 month ago
Reply to  Richard Davies

The documentary “American Mercenaries: Killing in Yemen” has been re-scheduled for 23:15 on 23/01/2024 on BBC2.

see https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m001vmsk

Dai Rob
Dai Rob
1 month ago

Welsh Labour MPs are an utterly pathetic lot!!

Gareth Westacott
Gareth Westacott
1 month ago

LSR is giving succour to the jihadist Houthis. It is they who are threatening international shipping in the area.

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