Ballistic Missiles Fired at US Warship Amid Rescue Operation

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Yemeni rebels apparently fired two ballistic missiles at the USS Mason while it was engaged in rescue operations in the Gulf of Aden on Sunday and into early Monday morning.

The ship had responded to a distress call from the M/V [Merchant Vessel] Central Park, which was under attack by an “unknown entity.”

The Mason intercepted the vessel and demanded its release, at which point, “five armed individuals” left the Central Park, got back into their own small craft, and attempted to flee the scene.

The Mason pursued, however, and took the five apparent would-be hijackers into custody.

However, at 1:41 a.m. local time, two missiles were fired from what U.S. Central Command said were “Houthi controlled areas in Yemen,” aimed at either the Mason or the Central Park. (As the missiles never got closer than 10 nautical miles from the ships, which had been targeted was probably unknown.)

The Mason, an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer first launched in 2001 and currently assigned to the Dwight D. Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group, was wrapping up its response to the tanker’s distress call at the time the missiles were fired, according to the statement.

No one on either vessel was hurt, nor was any damage reported.

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