Saudi-led coalition destroys nine Houthi weapons depots in Yemen

The coalition gave the Houthis six hours to remove weapons from a sports ground in a populated area near the capital Sanaa

Coalition spokesman Colonel Turki al-Malki speaks during a news conference in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia March 26, 2018. REUTERS/Faisal Al Nasser
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The Saudi-led coalition has said it destroyed nine Houthi weapons depots near the Yemeni capital Sanaa on Friday.

A military operation targeted the Tashreefat military camp run by Iran-backed Houthi rebels, the Saudi state news agency quoted the coalition as saying.

Coalition forces learnt that the Houthis were storing weapons at the Al Thawra sports ground in northern Sanaa and gave the rebels six hours to remove them from the populated area.

The coalition closely monitored the transfer of weapons from the sports facility to the camp and, after the 2300 GMT deadline, attacked the camp to which weapons had been transferred, it said in a statement early on Friday.

“The operation has been conducted in line with international humanitarian law and rules,” the coalition said.

It said that it regularly warns civilians against approaching Houthi sites.

The coalition has accused the group of storing weapons in civilian buildings.

On Thursday, the coalition also announced that it had targeted a central security camp in Sanaa with “painful and precise strikes”.

It said the operation was a response to a Houthi drone attack targeting the port city of Jizan in south-western Saudi Arabia.

The Houthis have launched repeated cross-border drone and missile attacks on Saudi Arabia since the Saudi-led coalition intervened in Yemen in March 2015, after the rebels ousted the internationally recognised government from Sanaa.

Also on Thursday, the coalition said it carried out 36 operations against the Houthis in Marib to support government troops defending the strategic city.

The attacks, carried out over a span of 24 hours, destroyed 28 military vehicles and killed more than 300 Houthi fighters, the coalition said in a statement carried by the Saudi-owned Al Sharq News.

The Houthis have been trying for nearly a year to take Marib, which hosts Yemen's biggest gasfields.

The northern city is controlled by the government and is home to three million people, including nearly one million who fled fighting in other parts of Yemen.

Updated: December 24, 2021, 11:33 AM