WASHINGTON, 3rd October, 2016 (WAM) — The United States last night condemned the attack on the UAE civilian ship, HSV-2 Swift, owned by the UAE Marine National Dredging Company and leased by the Arab Coalition.

The ship was on a routine trip to and from the city of Aden to deliver medical and relief aid, and evacuate the wounded civilians in order to complete their treatment outside Yemen.

In a statement last night, John Kirby, Spokesperson of the US Department of State, said, “The United States strongly condemns the Houthi forces’ unprovoked attack against a UAE vessel operating near the Bab al-Mandeb yesterday.

“We take these threats seriously. The United States remains committed to upholding freedom of navigation through the Bab al-Mandeb. We call on the Houthi-Saleh groups to immediately cease attacks against all vessels. These provocative actions risk exacerbating the current conflict and narrow the prospects for a peaceful settlement.

“Resolution to the conflict in Yemen must focus on a political solution and we urge the Houthi-Saleh groups to demonstrate their commitment to a peaceful solution by taking steps to deescalate by adhering to a cessation of hostilities without preconditions and we continue to call on all parties to return to the negotiations being facilitated by the United Nations,” the statement concluded.

WAM/Esraa/Moran