Houthi Rebels in Yemen launched a second ballistic missile aimed at a palace in Saudi Arabia that was intercepted by Saudi air defenses. The Saudi-led coalition is fighting the Houthi reported that the missile didn’t cause any damage and was actually headed toward a residential area.
A Houthi rebel spokesperson Mohammed AbdulSalam said on his Twitter account that the rebels fired the Burkan 2H ballistic missile, targeting the prestigious Yamama Palace hotel in the Saudi capital. The Burkan missile is an Iranian-modified scud missile.
Al Masirah TV, a Houthi-controlled TV station, reported that a large meeting at the hotel was the target of the missile. The missile launch coincides with 1,000 days since the Saudi-led coalition started its military campaign against Yemen’s Houthi rebels, which the kingdom says is backed by Iran.
Last month, Saudi Arabia’s Defense Ministry said it intercepted a Houthi missile over an international airport in the Saudi capital. The Houthi-run Defense Ministry claimed responsibility for that attack.
Last week, US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley presented what she called “concrete evidence” of Iran’s weapons proliferation. She stood in front of a short-range ballistic missile which she said was made in Iran, then sent to Houthi rebels in Yemen who fired it at Riyadh last month.
Saudi Arabia has been leading a coalition of states against the Iran-backed Houthi rebels, who toppled Yemen’s internationally recognized government in 2015.
Meanwhile, the UN Human Rights Watch has claimed that Saudi airstrikes in Yemen have killed 136 civilians and wounded 87 more since December 6. The ongoing humanitarian crisis in Yemen is reaching epidemic proportions. Cholera outbreaks are affecting close to a million people and have already resulted in over 2000 deaths.
Malnutrition is also affecting over 400,000 children while fresh water remains scarce.
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