Since Houthis seized a ship owned by an Israeli businessman last week in the Red Sea, global shipping has been taking stock of potentially rising risks.
On November 19, Yemeni Houthis seized a Japanese-operated cargo ship in the Red Sea, with armed men jumping onto its deck from a helicopter before hoisting Palestinian and Yemeni flags.
According to LSEG data, Galaxy Leader is owned by a company registered under Isle of Man-headquartered Ray Car Carriers, a unit of Tel Aviv-incorporated Ray Shipping, which belongs to Abraham Ungar, an Israeli businessperson.
The Marine Traffic tracking site said the empty car carrier left Korfez in Turkey and was on its way to Pipavav in India when it went offline southwest of Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The vessel is currently moored in the port of Hodeida in Yemen.
The ship’s operator, Japan’s Nippon Yusen, said it had set up a taskforce to collect information on the 25-person crew, who are from the Philippines, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Romania and Mexico.
Though no Israelis were on board, Israel called the incident an “Iranian act of terrorism” and said it would have “grave consequences” for international maritime security.