Dubai: The Saudi Royal Defence Forces have intercepted a ballistic missile launched by the Iran-backed Al Houthi militias from the Yemeni governorate of Saada in the direction of Saudi territories.
The Saudi Press Agency quoted Colonel Turki Al Malki, the spokesman for the Arab Coalition Forces, as saying in a statement that the missile was launched in the direction of civilian-populated areas in Jazan City.
“The missile has been launched premeditatedly against populated areas, but the Royal Saudi Force managed to intercept it,” he said, adding that residential areas were hit by fragments of the missile with no damage or injuries reported until the issuance of the statement.
“Such an act of aggression corroborates Iran’s involvement in supporting the Al Houthi militias with advanced weaponry in defiance of UN Resolutions 2216 and 2231 and is threatening the national security of Saudi Arabia as well as Arab and international stability,” he said, adding that it was a flagrant violation of international law.
Saudi Arabia and the US have accused Iran of illegally smuggling weapons into Yemen to sustain Al Houthi war efforts.
In December, one such Iranian-made ballistic missile was fired towards Riyadh for the first time in the three-year war.
Although it was intercepted, Riyadh called it an ‘act of war’.
In a recent meeting with New York Times editors, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman said that Al Houthis have become increasingly isolated politically.
He dismissed the seven missiles Al Houthis fired at Saudi Arabia from Yemen on March 25 as “a last-ditch effort” that only showed they were weak.
Saudi Arabia, he said, is now seeking to end the war through a political process, trying to divide Al Houthis and maintaining military pressure on them.