Saudi Arabia intercepts four drones launched by Yemen's Houthi rebels

Organisation of Islamic Co-operation condemned the targeting of the kingdom and pledged support for coalition

Saudi-led coalition spokesman, Colonel Turki Al Malki, displays the debris of a ballistic missile launched by Yemen's Houthi rebels towards the capital Riyadh during a news conference in Riyadh on March 29, 2020. Reuters 
Saudi-led coalition spokesman, Colonel Turki Al Malki, displays the debris of a ballistic missile launched by Yemen's Houthi rebels towards the capital Riyadh during a news conference in Riyadh on March 29, 2020. Reuters 

The Saudi-led coalition said on Friday it intercepted four explosive-laden drones launched by Yemen’s Houthi rebels towards the kingdom.

Three of the drones were intercepted and destroyed over territory controlled by the Houthis in Yemen, coalition spokesman Col Turki Al Malki said in a statement reported by the official Saudi Press Agency.

“We are implementing procedures that will protect our civilians in accordance with international law,” he said.

Saudi Arabia has been the target of repeated Houthi attacks in recent weeks, with the rebels using ballistic missiles or drones to target the kingdom's most populous towns and cities.

“The coalition is able to immediately address and thwart threats by the Iran-backed Houthis in Yemen by closely monitoring their activities,” Col Al Malki said.

The Organisation of Islamic Co-operation (OIC) condemned the Houthi attacks on Saudi Arabia on Friday.

"We hold the Houthi militia and those funding and arming the group responsible for carrying out these terrorist acts," OIC Secretary General Yousef Al Othaimeen said in a statement.

Mr Al Othaimeen said the OIC supports Saudi Arabia's efforts in restoring the power of Yemen's internationally recognised government and countering terrorism.

The coalition launched a new military operation against the rebels in Yemen on Wednesday in response to the attacks on the kingdom.

Col Al Malki said the coalition intercepted and destroyed eight drones and four missiles that were fired into the country recently.

They included an Iranian missile that targeted the Saudi capital of Riyadh.

"Iran is known for smuggling weapons to the rebels. It has spread destruction and threatened the security of the region and has intentionally targeted civilians," Col Al Malki said.

The coalition intervened in Yemen at the request of the government after the Houthis took control of the capital Sanaa in late 2014.

Published: July 3, 2020 07:23 PM

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