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Yemen's Houthis claim 'massive drone attack' on Saudi airport

The rebels said they launched drones into the kingdom [Getty]

Date of publication: 7 September, 2020

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The Houthis claimed a 'massive attack' on Saudi Arabia's Abha International Airport, although the kingdom has yet to confirm the reports.
Yemen's Houthi rebels claimed to have launched a "massive" attack on Saudi Arabia's Abha airport on Sunday, the latest in increasing cross-border assaults by the rebels.

The group, which has controlled the capital Sanaa since 2014 despite a Saudi-led military coalition intervention, dispatched eight drones into the kingdom, a statement by the rebels said.

"The air force, using a number of drones, carried out a massive attack on military sites in southern Saudi Arabia," Houthi military spokesman, Yayha Sarea said.

Abha International Airport was among the targeted "sensitive sites", Sarea said, according to the Houthi-run Al-Masirah television channel.

The Houthi official said the attacks were launched in response to air bombardment by the Saudi-led coalition as well as the ongoing "aggression" and siege of Yemen by the neighbouring kingdom.

Saudi Arabia has yet to issue a statement on any attacks from Yemen.

However, the announcement came days after the coalition on Friday said it had downed  a rebel "explosive" drone in Yemeni airspace.

Coalition spokesman, Colonel Turki Al-Maliki announced the latest development in a statement published on the official Saudi Press Agency [SPA].

"The coalition forces were able, on Friday evening, to intercept and destroy an explosive UAV in Yemeni airspace, which was launched by the Iranian-backed terrorist Houthi militia towards the kingdom," the state said.

"The plane was targeting civilians and civilian objects in a deliberate and systematic manner," the official claimed, without providing further details.

Friday's downing of the drone is the second reported incident in just five days.

In July, Yemen's Houthis claimed to have a bank of vital targets in Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Israel, in a stark warning amid increased long-range attacks on the neighbouring kingdom.

The rebels said the targets were determined through detailed intelligence, though fell short of revealing the source.

Read also: Yemen in Focus: Houthi offensive on Marib could determine country's future

Abdullah Yahya Al-Hakim, the chief of the groups' intelligence and reconnaissance body, made the remarks, according to the rebel-run Saba news agency.

More than 120,000 people have died in the Yemen war, which began when Houthi rebels stormed the capital Sanaa and moved south.

The conflict intensified after the Saudi-led coalition intervened in March 2015 against the Houthis, with waves of airstrikes that killed thousands and a blockade that has devastated the country.

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