Meanwhile, off the coast of Yemen, Iran-aligned Houthis rebels seized an Emirati-flagged ship in the Red Sea.
The group – which Israel and the US describe as an Iranian proxy – acknowledged the seizure of the Rwabee in a crucial maritime route for international trade and energy.
A Houthi military spokesman, Yahia Sarei, said rebel forces had seized what he described as an Emirati “military cargo ship” carrying equipment into Yemen’s territorial waters “without any license” to engage in “hostile acts” against Yemen’s stability. He said the rebels would offer more details on the seizure later.
The Saudi-led coalition against the Houthis accused the group of an act of “armed piracy”. The coalition said the vessel was transporting medical equipment from a dismantled Saudi field hospital on the Yemeni island of Socotra, without offering evidence.
“The Houthi militia must immediately release the ship, otherwise the coalition forces shall take all necessary measures and procedures to deal with this violation, including the use of force,” Brig Gen Turki al-Malki said in a statement.
In nearby Iraq, the US-led coalition against the Islamic State shot down two armed drones targeting its compound at Baghdad airport early on Monday.
US counter rocket, artillery, and mortar (C-RAM) systems engaged the drones, which were destroyed without causing casualties, a coalition spokesperson said.