Report: Houthis Sever Undersea Communications Cables Linking Europe and Asia


The Iran-backed Houthi terrorist group knocked out four undersea communications cables linking Saudi Arabia and Djibouti, a report by an Israeli news outlet claimed Monday.

The submarine cables were struck out of commission through sabotage in recent months, alleged Israeli news outlet Globes.

Telecom firms linked to the Yemen government have previously said they fear Houthi rebels are planning to sabotage a network of seafloor cables in the Red Sea critical to the functioning of the western internet and the transmission of financial data.

Attacks by the Houthis are widely considered to have damaged the cables believed to belong to the AAE-1, Seacom, Europe India Gateway (EIG), and TGN systems.

The knock-out marks serious disruption in communications between Europe and Asia and a new step in the battle to stop the group’s efforts to dominate across the vital Red Sea shipping lanes.

The AAE-1 cable connects East Asia to Europe via Egypt, connecting China to the West through countries such as Pakistan and Qatar.

The Europe India Gateway cable system connects southern Europe to Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Djibouti, the UAE, and India.

The Seacom cable connects Europe, Africa, and India, and is connected to South Africa.

Meanwhile, the immediate harm will be felt by the Gulf states and India, Globes noted.

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The repair of such a large number of underwater cables may take at least eight weeks according to estimates and involve exposure to risk from the Houthi terror organization.

The BBC reported earlier this month Yemen’s legitimate, U.N.-recognised government in Aden warned the Houthis, who seized much of Yemen in 2014, were threatening to sabotage the crucial undersea communication cables, including internet lines, which run under the Red Sea – connecting Asia to Europe.

The warning came after a channel linked to the Houthis on the Telegram messaging app posted a map showing undersea cable routes in the Red Sea.

The group has reportedly claimed they have easily accessed maps showing the confluence of undersea communications cables running past their coastline, as they pass through the Bab al-Mandab Strait which, at its narrowest, is just 20 miles wide.

Weaponizing the seafloor is not entirely without precedent: The British cut German subsea telegraph cables at the very start of World War I to isolate Berlin from the world, and seabed sonar in the Greenland-Iceland-U.K. gap became a fixture in the Cold War.

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