Houthis Capture $30 Million American Reaper Drone

(USNewsMag.com) – On May 29th, a $30 million U.S. MQ-9 Reaper drone went down over Yemen, captured by the Iran-aligned Houthi rebels.

It is unclear if the drone crashed or was shot down. However, video footage released by the Houthis on social media shows the downed drone, the sixth to be captured by the Houthis, in what appears to be near-perfect condition. However, no markings were visible on the drone.

The drone’s GPS might have been hijacked, according to the military affairs website Army Recognition.

However, Houthi spokesman Yahya Saree stated that his fighters shot the drone down using a “locally made surface-to-air missile.” He also said that the Houthis had attacked the bulk carrier Laax and several other vessels.

The $30 million Reaper drones can fly at an altitude of up to 50,000 feet and for up to 24 hours before they must land. This is the third drone to be lost in May, as the fourth MQ-9 Reaper drone was reported as downed on May 17th, and the fifth MQ-9 Reaper drone was reported as downed on May 21st.

Since the Oct. 7th attack by Hamas in Israel, the Houthis have been launching drone and missile attacks on ships in the Red Sea as a show of support for the Palestinians. Trade between Europe and Asia has slowed due to the attacks they have launched on the ships traveling along the busy trade route. The attacks killed three sailors aboard the Greek-operated ship True Confidence on March 7th.

In response to the attacks, the U.S. and British maritime forces have launched strikes on Houthi targets in Yemen. However, the Houthis have continued to target ships, including three in the Red Sea, two U.S. ships in the Arabian Sea, and an oil tanker in the Mediterranean Sea on May 29th.

The Houthis have stated that the attacks will continue until the conflict in Gaza ends and the Palestinians receive aid.

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