Politics

Saudi Arabia intercepts new Houthi missile

By Sultan al-Barei in Riyadh and AFP

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Saudi Arabia intercepted over the weekend a ballistic missile launched by Iran-backed Houthis from Yemeni territory. [Photo circulated on social media]

Saudi air defences on Sunday (June 10th) intercepted a ballistic missile over the southern city of Jizan, fired from territory held by the Houthis (Ansarallah) in neighbouring Yemen.

Debris from the missile landed in residential areas of Jizan without causing casualties, the coalition said in a statement released by the official Saudi Press Agency.

The attack comes a day after three civilians were killed in Jizan when the Iran-backed Houthis fired a "projectile" at the province, according to the coalition.

The strikes coincide with the advance of coalition-backed Yemeni forces on the Houthi-held Red Sea port of al-Hodeidah, the main conduit for humanitarian supplies into the country.

The southern region has been hit by a high volume of ballistic missiles launched by the Houthis, which is backed by Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), said Maj. Gen. Mansour al-Shehri, former Saudi army officer and military attaché.

On Friday (June 8th), two rockets also were fired at southern Saudi Arabia, one of which failed and landed in Yemeni territory, while the other was intercepted by Saudi air defences, he told Al-Mashareq.

The next day, a rocket reached a populated area in Jizan and landed on a civilian vehicle, killing three Saudis -- Ahmed Jahshour Sahari, his brother Saud Jahshour Sahari, and their relative Abdo Mohsen Sahari, he said.

"This escalation by the [Houthis] was to be expected, especially after the losses they suffered in several areas of Yemen," he said, adding that coalition forces supporting the legitimate government have successfully liberated vast areas controlled by the Houthis.

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