Egypt’s president Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi on Monday expressed deep concern over security in the Red Sea following an attack by Yemen’s Houthis on two oil tankers that forced Saudi Arabia to temporarily suspend crude shipments through the strait of Bab al-Mandab.
Speaking at a joint news conference with his Yemeni counterpart, the Egyptian President also said Cairo was committed to helping Yemen regain its security after over three years of war that killed thousands of people.
“We categorically deny that Yemen would become a foothold for the influence of non-Arab forces, or a platform for security and stability threats against the brotherly Arab countries or freedom of navigation in the Red Sea and Bab al-Mandab Strait,” Sisi said, speaking alongside President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi.
In July, Saudi Arabia temporarily halted oil shipments through Bab al-Mandab citing security concerns after Iran-aligned Yemen’s Houthis attacked two oil tankers in the Red Sea near the strait with missiles, damaging one vessel.
Saudi Arabia resumed oil shipments through the strait several days later, but the incident has highlighted the magnitude of the situation in the area, where fighting between the Houthis and supporters of Hadi’s government has been raging since 2015.