China is pushing back on the United States and the multilateral coalition that are launching strikes on Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen, suggesting such operations are further escalation from the Israel-Hamas war. He also said they were “unlikely” to achieve their desired outcome of preventing the rebel group from attacking maritime vessels in the Red Sea.
Zhang Jun, China’s permanent representative to the United Nations, said Saturday that the two strikes in Yemen on Friday, Jan. 12, and Saturday, Jan. 13, were “regrettable” and only “causing infrastructure damage and civilian deaths.” He also accused the U.S. of being “contradictory and irresponsible.”
“It’s regrettable to see some countries blatantly carry out military operations against Yemen, causing infrastructure damage and civilian deaths, as well as increasing security risks at Red Sea waters. This will not help protect the safety and navigation freedom of commercial ships. On the contrary, military operations will hinder political progress in Yemen,” Zhang said. “It is highly unlikely that desired goals can be accomplished through such military measures.”
He added: “The escalation of tensions in the Red Sea is one of the ripple effects stemming from the Palestine-Israel conflict. Hoping the conflict in Gaza will not spill over while passively indulging it to drag on is a naive illusion. It is contradictory and irresponsible to incite military confrontations and exacerbate tensions while simultaneously calling for an end to further spillover effects.”
Zhang’s remarks come after the U.S. launched a singular strike on Saturday, hitting a Houthi-controlled radar facility in Yemen.
U.S. Central Command said the “follow-on action” early Saturday was carried out by the Navy destroyer USS Carney, which used Tomahawk land attack missiles. It was the second strike in two days against the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen.
“At 3:45 a.m. (Sana’a time) on Jan 13., U.S. forces conducted a strike against a Houthi radar site in Yemen,” CENTCOM said on X.
On Friday, the U.S. military forces — together with the United Kingdom and with support from Australia, Bahrain, Canada, and the Netherlands — conducted “multilateral coalition strikes” in Yemen, using over 150 munitions to hit more than 60 targets.
Both strikes came in retaliation for dozens of Houthi attacks on commercial and military vessels in the Red Sea over recent months.
Fox News’ Liz Friden contributed to this report.