Saudi Arabia 'intercepts' two new Houthi drones, as attacks ramp up

Saudi Arabia 'intercepts' two new Houthi drones, as attacks ramp up
Saudi air defences intercepted two Houthi-directed drones, one of them allegedly heading for a residential area in Abha, according to the Saudi-led coalition.
2 min read
18 June, 2019
The Houthis have directed several attacks on Saudi Arabia over the past week [AFP]

The Saudi-led coalition said on Tuesday that the kingdom had intercepted another two Houthi drones, one of them "targeting a residential area" in the southern city of Abha, according to the Saudi press agency.

The Yemeni rebels have launched several strikes on Abha airport - a dual-function military and civilian aviation base - since last week.

One such attack wounded 26 people, according to Saudi officials.

The Houthi's Al-Masirah TV said on Monday that the Iran-linked rebels had launched drone attacks on Abha airport.

The group, which holds Yemen's capital Sanaa and surrounding areas, also threatened to launch other attacks on oil tankers in the Red Sea.

The alleged attack comes two days after the Houthis on Saturday targeted the kingdom's Abha and Jizan airports, rendering them "unoperational

The Abha, Jizan and Najran airports in southern Saudi Arabia have all been frequent targets of Houthi drone and rocket strikes, which have increased in number since last month as tensions rise in the Gulf between Saudi Arabia, the US and allies, and Iran.

Sabotage attacks on oil tankers have been pinned on Iran, as have Houthi-directed drone strikes on a major Saudi oil pipeline last month.

The Houthis deny their attacks on Saudi Arabia are directed by Iran, instead claiming the attacks are motivated by Saudi Arabia's failure to comply with peace initiatives in Yemen.

The kingdom has been at the helm of an international military coalition fighting in Yemen since 2015.

The war has resulted in the world's worst humanitarian crisis, according to the UN, with almost 25 million people in need of aid.