PM statement on defending the UK and its allies: 15 January 2024

The Prime Minister Rishi Sunak updated the House of Commons on military strikes on Houthi rebels in Yemen, as well as his recent visit to Ukraine. From: Prime Minister’s Office, 10 Downing Street and The Rt Hon Rishi Sunak MP Published 15 January 2024 Location: House of Commons Delivered on: 15 January 2024 I would like to update the House on the action that we took on Thursday night against Houthi military targets in Yemen. Since 19 November, Iran-backed Houthis have launched over 25 illegal and unacceptable attacks on commercial shipping in the Red sea, and on 9 January they mounted a direct attack against British and American warships. They fired on our ships and our sailors—it was the biggest attack on the Royal Navy for decades—and so we acted. We did so in self-defence, consistent with the UN charter, and to uphold freedom of navigation, as Britain has always done. Alongside the United States, with support from Australia, Bahrain, Canada and the Netherlands, we ordered the RAF to strike two Houthi military facilities in Yemen. I want to be clear that these were limited strikes. They were carefully targeted at launch sites for drones and ballistic missiles to degrade the Houthis’ capacity to make further attacks on international shipping. I can tell the House today that our initial assessment is that all 13 planned targets were destroyed. At the drone and cruise missile base in Bani, nine buildings were successfully hit. A further three buildings were hit at Abbs airfield, along with a cruise missile launcher caught in the open. We have seen no evidence thus far of civilian casualties, which we took great care to avoid. I know the whole House will join me in paying tribute to the incredible bravery and professionalism of all our servicemen […]

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By Donato