Israel says Houthi seized Japanese-operated cargo ship in Red Sea near Yemen

Israel's military said on Sunday the Houthi rebel group in Yemen has seized a cargo ship in the Red Sea near Yemen. It says the ship was heading from Turkey to India.

The Prime Minister's Office of Israel says the cargo ship is owned by a British company and operated by a Japanese company.

It says the ship is carrying 25 people, including those from Ukraine, Bulgaria and the Philippines, and that no Israelis were on board.

Japanese shipping firm NYK Line says it operates the seized ship and it was in contact with the British company that owns the ship late on Sunday, Japan time.

NYK Line says the ship has a total of 25 crewmembers, but their safety remains unknown. It adds no Japanese nationals are among the crew.

The company says the ship was scheduled to head for an Indian port after sailing through the Suez Canal.

The Houthis, backed by Iran, have been launching ballistic and other missiles at Israel. The group has also warned it will target Israeli ships in the Red Sea.