A US destroyer shot down drones and a missile in the Red Sea launched towards it by Yemen’s Houthi rebels, officials said.

The assault on Tuesday apparently targeted the USS Carney, an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer that has been involved in the American campaign against the rebels who have launched attacks over Israel’s war against Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

The Houthi attack involved bomb-carrying drones and one anti-ship ballistic missile, the US military’s Central Command said.

The US later launched an airstrike, destroying three anti-ship missiles and three bomb-carrying drone boats, Central Command said.

Brigadier General Yahya Saree, a Houthi military spokesman, acknowledged the attack but claimed its forces targeted two American warships without elaborating.

The Houthis “will not stop until the aggression is stopped and the siege on the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip is lifted”, Mr Saree said.

Mr Saree did not acknowledge the later US airstrikes.

The Houthis have not offered any assessment of the damage they have suffered in the American-led strikes that began in January, though it has said at least 22 of its fighters have been killed.

Since November, the rebels have repeatedly targeted ships in the Red Sea and surrounding waters over the Israel-Hamas war.

The Indian navy also released footage of its sailors from the INS Kolkata fighting a fire aboard the MSC Sky II, which had been targeted by the Houthis in the Gulf of Aden on Monday.

Smoke poured out of one container aboard the vessel, which also showed scorch marks from the impact of a Houthi missile.

The Mediterranean Shipping Co, a Switzerland-based firm, said the missile struck the ship as it was travelling from Singapore to Djibouti.

“The missile caused a small fire that has been extinguished while no crew were injured,” the company said.

The Houthis have been hailing ships over the radio in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden as well since launching their attacks.

The UK military’s United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations centre reported on Wednesday that a new round of similar radio messages went out to a ship, and urged crews to report any suspicious activity.