Saudi Arabia intercepts drone attack launched by Yemen's Houthi rebels

Houthis intensified attacks against Saudi Arabia in recent weeks

Spokesman of the Saudi-led military coalition Colonel Turki Al-Maliki talks during an interview with AFP in the capital Riyadh, on May 21, 2019. Coalition spokesman Colonel Turki al-Maliki said two missiles were shot down between Jeddah and Taiz districts of Mecca province but did not elaborate on the suspected target or who fired them. / AFP / FAYEZ NURELDINE
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The Saudi-led coalition on Wednesday intercepted and destroyed a bomb-laden drone launched towards the kingdom by Iran-backed Houthi rebels.

Arab Coalition spokesman Col Turki Al Malki said the drone "as well as its terrorist elements" were destroyed, he did not elaborate.

The attempted attack came from Yemen's Amran governate, the coalition said.

"The military operation of the coalition is in compliance with international humanitarian law and its customary rules," Col Al Malki said.

"We deal with the sources of threats firmly to protect civilians and civilian objects from terrorist attacks."

In recent weeks, the Houthis intensified cross-border attacks using explosive-laden drones and ballistic missiles. Most attacks were foiled by Saudi defence systems.

Col Al Malki travelled to the city of Marib last week to meet the Yemeni governor of the internationally recognised government's last northern stronghold.

The meeting came after one of oil company Aramco's terminals in the Red Sea city of Jeddah was targeted.

Saudi civilians are also increasingly becoming targets, with an attack in early March injuring five in Jazan.

The Gulf Co-operation Council met on Wednesday and condemned the use of civilians as shields by Iran-backed Houthi militias in the conflict in Yemen's Marib province.

Yemen has been in conflict since 2014 when the Houthis seized Sanaa, the capital, and much of the country’s north.

In March 2015, the Saudi-led coalition intervened to restore the government of President Abdrabu Mansur Hadi.