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The USS Dwight D. Eisenhower leaves the Red Sea as Houthi attacks continue

The U.S. aircraft carrier Dwight D. Eisenhower, also known as "IKE," sails in the Red Sea on June 12, 2024.
Bernat Armangue
/
AP
The U.S. aircraft carrier Dwight D. Eisenhower, also known as "IKE," sails in the Red Sea on June 12, 2024.

The aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower — which had been leading the response against Houthi attacks on shipping in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden — is returning home.

U.S. Central Command announced that the carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt will head to the Middle East to maintain a presence in the region.

The Eisenhower was deployed to the region more than seven months ago — just a few weeks after the Oct. 7 Hamas attack against Israel.

The nuclear-powered aircraft carrier played a major role in protecting commercial and military vessels from the Houthis, the Iranian-backed rebel group.

"Flying over 30,000 hours and sailing over 55,000 miles the IKE CSG demonstrated our commitment to regional stability and protected freedom of navigation throughout the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden," Central Command wrote on X, referring to the Eisenhower.

"The IKE CSG also upheld their commitment to safety of all seafarers, rescuing mariners in distress on several occasions following unprovoked attacks on innocent mariners by Iranian-backed Houthis," Central Command added.

Its departure comes amid growing attacks by Houthi rebels. Last week, the ship Tutor, a Liberian-flagged, Greek-owned-and-operated vessel, was sunk by a Houthi strike, killing one mariner on board, The Associated Pressreported.

The latest strike occurred Saturday, when an unidentified commercial ship in the Gulf of Aden was targeted. The vessel was not hit and the crew was reported safe, the U.S.-overseen Joint Maritime Information Center said, according to the AP.

Copyright 2024 NPR

Juliana Kim
Juliana Kim is a weekend reporter for Digital News, where she adds context to the news of the day and brings her enterprise skills to NPR's signature journalism.