Dubai - Saudi Arabia’s air defence systems shot down a drone over the kingdom on Friday, the Saudi-led military coalition in Yemen said, and it accused the country’s Al Houthi militia of launching the aircraft and targeting civilians.
Some civilians suffered light injuries from debris when the drone was shot down, coalition spokesman Colonel Turki Al Maliki said, according to Saudi state television .
The aircraft had been heading towards residential areas in Abha, around 230 km north of the border with Yemen, Saudi-owned Al Arabiya TV said.
An inspection of the wreckage showed the drone had “Iranian characteristics and specifications,” Al Maliki said.
Civil war in Yemen has pitted Al Houthis against the government of Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi since late 2014. The Saudi-led coalition intervened on the side of Hadi’s government in 2015.
The coalition accuses Iran of supplying Al Houthis with arms, including drones and missiles. Tensions have heightened in recent weeks over a stalled United Nations-led peace deal in the port of Hodeida. The UN is trying to arrange a withdrawal of both sides from Hodeida, the main entry point for most of Yemen’s imports.
Al Houthis have fired dozens of missiles into Saudi Arabia in the four-year conflict. Most of the missiles have been intercepted by the Saudi military.