The Red Sea, a vital shipping route for about 12% of world trade, has been under siege by the Houthi rebels for the past three months. However, a new concern has emerged – Iran’s emissaries in Yemen may pose a threat to the global financial media. This is because 17% of global digital communication is conducted through 16 underwater cables that pass through the Bab al-Mandab strait, located west of Yemen, and are critical for financial communication between the Far East and Europe.
The Bab al-Mandab strait is home to these critical cables, with one of the most important being the “Asia Africa Europe 1” (AAE-1) cable. This 25,000 km long cable has a capacity of 40 terabytes per second and is managed and maintained by 17 telecommunications operators, with Chinese Unicom overseeing coordination within the consortium. The potential threat posed by the Houthis to these critical cables cannot be ignored as they have already published a map on a Telegram channel associated with them that includes these submarine cables.
If an attack were to occur on these submarine cables, it could have serious implications for global communications and financial transfers. Dr. Harel Manshari, an expert in cybersecurity department says that these underwater fibers connecting East with Europe are particularly susceptible to malicious attacks or damage which could significantly impact financial transfers between regions. Such disruption could cause widespread chaos in the global economy and lead to widespread disruption of international communications.
In conclusion, while we may be accustomed to seeing conflict in certain parts of the world, we must also be aware of how it can affect our daily lives beyond those borders. As such, it is crucial that we take measures now to secure these critical infrastructure assets before it’s too late.