The Houthi militia in Yemen have said several times that Russia is not its enemy and that Russian ships were safe to transit the Red Sea, but that has not stopped missiles landing close to two Russian vessels since late December.
Russia had condemned the US and UK for their military strikes on Yemen, saying that they were an “irresponsible adventure that risked sowing chaos across the entire Middle East”.
That appears to have led Russia’s leading tanker group Sovcomflot to consider alternative shipping routes in case the situation deteriorates further, TASS news agency reported on Tuesday January 16th.
Tass quoted Sovcomflot as saying that at the moment it was still operating in the Red Sea, but could use alternative routes in case of further escalation.
“Due to the escalation of hostilities in the region, it is currently impossible to predict whether the company will continue to operate there on an ongoing basis,” it said. “The company is closely monitoring the development of the situation [in the Red Sea] and assessing the risks. If necessary, alternative routes are being developed for vessels.”