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Experts say air strikes can't solve issues in Red Sea


U.S. forces conducted a strike against a Houthi radar site in Yemen at 3:45 a.m. local time on Saturday, the United States Central Command said in a statement, a day after a U.S.-led coalition launched a wave of attacks in Yemen to degrade the Houthis' ability to attack Red Sea shipping.

Analysts have warned the coalition's strikes might lead to further escalation of the current tensions in the Red Sea, as well as the Middle East.

Senior fellow at the Washington-based Middle East Institute Bilal Saab said the recent strikes could be first of many. "This is a process. This is not going to be a one-off strike…," he said during an interview with NBC News.


Einar Tangen, a senior fellow at Beijing-based think tank the Taihe Institute, said only a resolution in Gaza would create a pause for all parties to go back to the negotiation table.

The pressure created by the daily death toll in Gaza is forcing action by some groups, he suggested. As the Gaza conflict goes on, it's impossible to see that these types of attack by the Houthis, or other groups, will stop, he told CGTN.

The strikes, the first by the U.S. on Yemeni territory since 2016, marked a substantial escalation of the crisis in the Red Sea, said Niu Xinchun, a professor at Ningxia University's China-Arab Research Institute.

Air strikes can't solve issues in Yemen, Niu told China Media Group, noting that strikes launched by Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates had not deterred the Houthis in the past.

Niu added that the U.S.-led strikes won't solve the problems in the Red Sea, and the Houthis are likely to intensify their attacks on U.S. and UK warships, though the threat is limited.

China said on Friday that it is seriously concerned about a rise in tensions in Yemen and called for all parties to exercise restraint to prevent further escalation. Zhang Jun, China's permanent representative to the United Nations, made the appeal at a United Nations Security Council meeting.

"We call on all parties, especially influential powers, to stick to the right direction of dialogue and consultation and make concrete efforts to maintain peace and stability in the Red Sea and the Middle East," he said.

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