A US guided-missile destroyer shot down 14 drones launched by Yemen’s Houthis in the Red Sea on Saturday, the US Central Command (CENTCOM) said in a statement.

“In the early morning hours of December 16 (Sanaa time), the US Arliegh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS CARNEY (DDG 64), operating in the Red Sea, successfully engaged 14 unmanned aerial systems launched as a drone wave from Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen,” read the statement.

“The UAS were assessed to be one-way attack drones and were shot down with no damage to ships in the area or reported injuries. Regional Red Sea partners were alerted to the threat.”


Earlier on Saturday, Britain’s defense minister Grant Shapps said that a UK destroyer had brought down a suspected attack drone in the Red Sea, amid rising maritime tensions in the region.

“Overnight, HMS Diamond shot down a suspected attack drone which was targeting merchant shipping in the Red Sea. One Sea Viper missile was fired and successfully destroyed the target,” Shapps said in a statement posted on X, formerly Twitter.

Britain announced last month that it was sending HMS Diamond, one of its most advanced naval vessels, to the Gulf to shore up its presence in the region.

The deployment followed the outbreak of conflict between Israel and the Palestinian militant group Hamas and the seizure of an Israeli-linked cargo vessel by Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthis in the Red Sea on November 19.

The Houthis have launched a series of drone and missile strikes targeting Israel since Hamas militants poured over the border into Israel on October 7, killing around 1,140 people, mostly civilians, according to Israeli figures.

Around 240 people were kidnapped in the attacks. Vowing to destroy Hamas and bring back the hostages, Israel launched a massive military offensive that the Hamas-run territory’s health ministry says has killed at least 18,800 people, mostly women and children.

CENTCOM, US Destroyer Downs 14 Drones Launched By Yemen’s Houthis In Red Sea
The US Navy Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, USS Carney

The Houthis have threatened to attack any vessels heading to Israeli ports unless food and medicine are allowed into the besieged Gaza Strip.

Two of the world’s largest shipping firms, Maersk and Hapag-Lloyd, said Friday they were suspending passage through a Red Sea strait vital for global commerce after the incidents.

-With agencies