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Bahraini-based resistance group claims responsibility for drone attack on Israel port 

May 5, 2024 at 12:39 pm

Bahraini-based resistance group, the Al-Ashtar Brigades logo [@ZulfikarAli514/X]

The Bahraini-based resistance group, the Al-Ashtar Brigades has claimed responsibility for a drone attack on the Israeli-controlled port of Eilat (Umm Al-Rashrash). According to a statement issued yesterday, the attack, which took place on 2 May, targeted vital infrastructure in the port, marking the first such operation by the group.

The reports come after an earlier report on Thursday, that the faction claimed responsibility for a drone attack on 27 April, targeting the headquarters of an Israeli company Trucknet, which is based in Eilat. Some outlets have conflated the two incidents, while others have claimed it was the first of two separate attacks.

The group said the targets had been hit to support the people of Gaza in their struggle against the occupation state. The statement also said operations against Israel will continue unless there is a stop to the war and blockade on Gaza.

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Over the past months, the same port has been targeted by other factions within the Axis of Resistance, notably Yemen’s Ansarallah-aligned armed forces, Lebanon’s Hezbollah and the Islamic Resistance in Iraq.

The naval blockade imposed by Ansarallah, also known as the Houthis, has disrupted activity in the port to such an extent that in March, Gideon Golber, the CEO of Eilat Port, was quoted as saying: “Every month, we had between 12 and 13 ships coming and going, and now we have 0.”

Named after a companion of Imam Ali, Malik Al-Ashtar, the Al-Ashtar Brigades, the paramilitary branch of the Islamic Resistance in Bahrain is designated by the Bahraini government as a terrorist organisation that operates outside of the kingdom, this designation is also shared by the US and Britain.

While footage of preparation for the April operation has circulated online, the Washington Institute says: “The open terrain and leisurely launch sequence of the drone makes it all but impossible that this drone was launched from Bahrain, an environment where it is difficult for Iran and Saraya al-Ashtar to smuggle even persons and light weapons or explosives into the country.”

“More likely Iraqi militias facilitated (and perhaps entirely undertook) the launch, dedicating the effort to Saraya al-Ashtar to help keep their dimming brand alive.”

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