(Bloomberg) --

A small cargo ship was on fire after being hit by three projectiles while sailing in the Gulf of Aden, marking the second significant incident in two days and a fresh ramp up of attacks. 

The attack on the Verbena happened about 98 miles (158 kilometers) east of Aden in Yemen and damage control efforts were underway, according to the Joint Maritime Information Centre, which coordinates liaison between military and commercial shipping. One person was injured. A second ship, the Seaguardian, also came under attack inside the Red Sea. 

The Verbena veered across the Gulf of Aden earlier on Thursday but was continuing to sail, ship-tracking compiled by Bloomberg shows. There were no signals from the Seaguardian at the time it was attacked, suggesting the vessel may have turned off its location transponder while passing the Yemeni coast.

A Houthi spokesman said in a televised statement that the group claimed responsibility for both attacks.

Yemen’s Houthi attacks on ships in the Red Sea have been a regular occurrence since the end of last year and have caused a reduction in traffic of about 70% compared with the start of December. The group has targeted vessels in what it says is a response to the Israel-Hamas war. 


On Wednesday, a commodity carrier called Tutor suffered severe flooding in its engine room following the first successful attack from a seaborne drone during the current campaign by the Houthis. 

The owners of the Tutor and Verbena didn’t respond to requests for comment. 

--With assistance from Sherif Tarek.

(Updates with additional details in first paragraph, Houthi spokesperson comment in fourth paragraph.)

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