Middle East

Saudi-led coalition intercepts rebel drone from Yemen

Houthi rebels say attacks on Saudi territory are reaction to Saudi-led coalition’s assault on Yemen

Saudi-led coalition intercepts rebel drone from Yemen

SANAA, Yemen

The Saudi-led coalition in Yemen said Saturday it had intercepted and destroyed an explosive-laden drone fired by Houthi rebels towards Saudi Arabia.

"The [coalition] air defenses destroyed a booby-trapped drone launched by the Houthi militia towards Khamis Mushait city [in southern Saudi Arabia]," the coalition said in a statement carried by official Saudi Al-Ikhbariya TV.

The coalition said it has taken the operational procedures to deal with sources of threat and to protect civilians from such aerial attacks, without giving further details.

There was no comment from the Houthis on the Saudi statement, but the rebel group regularly announces rocket and drone attacks on Saudi territories, saying they are a reaction to the Saudi-led coalition’s assault on Yemen.

Yemen has been ravaged by violence and instability since 2014, when Iran-backed Houthi rebels captured much of the country, including the capital Sanaa.

The crisis escalated in 2015 when the Saudi-led coalition launched a devastating air campaign aimed at rolling back Houthi territorial gains. It has since caused one of the world’s worst man-made humanitarian crises, with 80% of the population in need of assistance and protection.

*Ahmed Asmar contributed to this report from Ankara

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