Shipping firms avoid Red Sea as Houthi attacks increase

Iranian-backed Houthi militants in Yemen have stepped up attacks on vessels in the Red Sea to show their support for Palestinian Islamist group Hamas fighting Israel in Gaza.

The attacks, targeting a route that allows East-West trade, especially of oil, to use the Suez Canal to save the time and expense of circumnavigating Africa, have pushed some shipping companies to re-route vessels to avoid the area.

Below are companies (in alphabetical order) that are considering or have decided to pause shipping via the Red Sea:


French shipping group CMA CGM on Dec. 16 said it was pausing all container shipments through the Red Sea after an attack on one of its container ships, MSC Palatium III, a day earlier.


German container shipping line Hapag Lloyd said on Dec. 15 it was examining whether to pause sailings via the Red Sea, hours after reporting one of its ships had been attacked.

A projectile believed to be a drone struck its vessel Al Jasrah while sailing close to the coast of Yemen. No crew was injured.


Denmark’s A.P. Moller-Maersk on Dec. 15 said it would pause all container shipments through the Red Sea until further notice, following a “near-miss incident” involving its vessel Maersk Gibraltar a day earlier.

The ship was targeted by a missile while travelling from Salalah, Oman, to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, the company said.


Orient Overseas Container Line (OOCL) has stopped cargo acceptance to and from Israel until further notice due to operational issues, the shipping company owned by Hong Kong-based Oriental Overseas (International) Ltd (0316.HK) said on Dec. 16.

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Sydney Okafor

I am so passionate about this my profession as a broadcast journalist and voiceover artists and presently a reporter at TV360 Nigeria

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