Saudi forces intercept three ballistic missiles, blame Houthis

Saudi forces intercept three ballistic missiles, blame Houthis

Saudi-led coalition fighting Yemen’s Houthis say the rebels fired three ballistic missiles at cities in the kingdom’s east and south

Saudi Arabia authorities claim to have intercepted three ballistic missiles targeted at the country’s oil-rich eastern area as well as the cities in the south of Najran and Jazan.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for Saturday’s attacks, but the Saudi-led coalition fighting the Houthis in Yemen blamed the Iran-aligned rebel group.

There were no casualties reported.

According to Reuters, a missile aimed at the eastern region was intercepted over Dammam, according to a source familiar with the matter.

The missile’s shrapnel scattered across the Dammam Suburb area, injuring two Saudi children and suffering minor damage to 14 homes, according to the official SPA news agency, citing a statement from the defense department.

Earlier this week, the coalition said it had captured three explosive-laden drones on their way to Saudi Arabia.
The attacks come four days after a drone hit Abha International Airport in the south, wounding eight people and damaging a civilian plane.

Yemen’s Houthis launch drones and missiles into Saudi Arabia on a regular basis, including aerial attacks on Saudi oil installations. In September 2019, an attack on two Saudi Aramco plants in the country’s east temporarily shut down half of the country’s oil production.

According to a source familiar with the matter, there was no impact on state-controlled oil company Aramco’s facilities on Saturday, and the attack occurred outside of Aramco’s facilities.
“The Ministry of Defense will take the necessary and deterrent measures to protect its lands and capabilities, and stop such hostile and cross-border attacks to protect civilians, in accordance with international humanitarian law,” the ministry said in a statement according to SPA.

In 2015, the Saudi-led military coalition intervened in Yemen, backing forces loyal to President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi’s deposed government in their fight against the Houthis.

The grinding conflict has killed tens of thousands of lives and displaced millions, resulting in the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, according to the United Nations.
While the UN is pushing for an end to the war, the Houthis have demanded the reopening of Sanaa airport, closed under a Saudi blockade since 2016, before any ceasefire or negotiations.

The UN’s new envoy for Yemen, Hans Grundberg, officially assumes his duties on Sunday.

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