Two members of the Navy SEALs remained lacking on Saturday after a mishap two days in the past whereas they have been making an attempt to board a ship off the coast of Somalia, two present and two former Pentagon officers stated.

The incident comes as the US is stepping up actions towards Iranian-backed Houthi fighters in Yemen, intent on curbing their assaults on industrial vessels within the Crimson Sea. As a part of these missions, the U.S. Navy and allies have been responding to misery calls.

Over the previous two days, the U.S. and allies have struck Houthi-linked targets in Yemen, attempting to wreck the militia’s offensive capabilities.

Within the newest incident, the members of the SEAL workforce have been dispatched on Thursday to method a suspicious vessel off the Somali coast, the officers stated. It was unclear on Saturday what prompted the commandos to single out the vessel for a more in-depth investigation.

In current weeks, the Houthi militia and Somali-based pirates have threatened or seized ships within the Crimson Sea, the Gulf of Aden and off the Somali coast. The Houthis say they’re appearing in solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza, who’ve been below siege by the Israeli army following Hamas’s Oct. 7 assault on Israel. Pentagon officers stated on Saturday that the circumstances surrounding this incident have been completely different from these involving the Houthis or pirates. However they declined to reveal additional particulars.

As two members of the SEAL workforce tried to board the vessel Thursday night time in tough seas, one of many commandos apparently slipped off the boarding ladder, in response to one present and one former Pentagon official briefed on the incident. One other member of the workforce then jumped into the water to attempt to rescue the sailor, the officers stated. Each quickly disappeared within the swells.

The officers spoke on the situation of anonymity to debate operational issues.

Navy ships and plane have been instantly dispatched to the scene, the place search and restoration efforts have been underway, the officers stated. The army’s Central Command famous the rescue operations in an announcement on Friday, however made no point out of the sailors being members of a SEAL workforce or any particulars of the incident.

Navy officers have began the method of notifying the households of the commandos concerned within the episode, a former official stated.

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