The UAE’s ambassador to the UN Lana Nusseibeh on Friday said Yemen’s Houthi rebels wanted to kill the “maximum number of civilians” when they launched an attack on Abu Dhabi earlier this week.
Ms Nusseibeh spoke with reporters outside the UN Security Council chamber after the 15-nation body released a statement condemning Monday's attack that hit fuel lorries and left three dead and six injured.
A UAE investigation into the strikes “shows clearly that [Yemen's capital] Sanaa, amongst other places of origin, were the place that these missiles — cruise missiles, ballistic missiles and drones — were launched indiscriminately at my country”, Ms Nusseibeh said.
The goal of the Iran-aligned Houthis was “to target the maximum number of civilians and civilian infrastructure”, she added.
“The UAE is able to defend itself and will defend itself against all violations of international law, against all attacks, cross-border attacks against its sovereignty and against all attacks against its way of life and its people at the same time,” she said.
Ms Nusseibeh said the UAE was bolstered by the more than 100 nations and international organisations that have condemned the strikes and said “more international action is needed to address the Houthi threat and hold them responsible”.
“The proliferation of missile and other technology that enabled the terrorist attack is a clear threat to the entire international community,” she said.
A spokesman for the Houthis did not immediately respond to The National's request for comment.
Flanked by the ambassadors of France, Britain, India, Kenya and other Security Council members outside the chamber, Ms Nusseibeh expressed her condolences to the families of the Indian and Pakistani citizens killed in the attacks.
“The UAE cares deeply about our citizens and about the millions of people from around the world who have made our country their home,” Ms Nusseibeh said.
“More than 200 nationalities call the UAE home and more than 60,000 passengers transit through Abu Dhabi International Airport every day, which was one of the targets targeted by this Houthi attack.”