Saudi Arabia intercepts two missiles fired by Yemen's Houthis

Elias Hubbard
March 29, 2020

"At 11.11pm on Saturday, March 28 2020, the Royal Saudi Air Defense intercepted and destroyed two ballistic missiles launched by the terrorist Iran-backed Houthi militia from (Sa'dah) and (Sana'a) toward civilians and civilian objects in the kingdom", he said.

Residents in the capital reported to state media that there were multiple blasts followed by the sirens of emergency vehicles in northern districts.

Two ballistic missiles have been launched from Yemen in the Middle East, where there is an ongoing civil war, toward Riyadh, the capital of neighboring Saudi Arabia.

The source of the missiles is yet to be identified and there was no immediate claim of responsibility.

The war is fueled by the rivalry between Saudi Arabia and Iran, with the latter supporting the Houthis.

The commerce ministry seized 1.17 million masks from a private store in Hail, northwest of the capital, after authorities Wednesday confiscated more than four million masks stored in a facility in the western city of Jeddah in violation of commercial regulations, the official Saudi Press Agency reported.

There was no immediate comment from the rebels.

The assault comes after all parties in Yemen's long conflict offered support on Thursday for the United Nations' call for a ceasefire to protect civilians from the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Yemen's government condemned the attack, which it said undermined efforts to scale down the conflict amid the coronavirus outbreak. The country is already gripped by what the United Nations calls the world's worst humanitarian crisis.

Yemen's Iran-aligned Houthis battling the Saudi-led coalition have launched hundreds of missiles and drones across the border, mostly at nearby military and civilian targets, but also at Riyadh.

The warring sides had earlier shown an interest in de-escalation, with a Saudi official saying in November that Riyadh had an "open channel" with the rebels with a goal of ending the war.

Anti-government forces in Yemen have so far not said anything about the attack.

Saudi Arabia is also scrambling to limit the spread of the disease at home.

But those efforts seem to have unravelled. There were no deaths or injuries reported.

Riyadh had expected a quick victory when it led a multi-billion dollar intervention in 2015 to oust Huthi rebels, under a newly assertive foreign policy led by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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