Skip to main content

Saudi-led coalition says missile destroyed in Yemen targeted border town

Saudi Arabia accuses Houthi rebels in Yemen of deliberately aiming missile towards its civilians
Saudi Arabia says it intercepted Houthi missiles targeting border town (AFP)

The Saudi-led military coalition in Yemen said it had destroyed a missile allegedly being used by Houthi rebels to target a Saudi border town on Saturday. 

A statement published by the Saudi state news agency said drones were used to intercept a missile targeting the town of Najran. 

"The Joint Forces Command of the Coalition will continue to apply and implement all decisive and rigorous measures to neutralise and destroy such capabilities to protect civilians from these terrorist acts," the statement said. 

Saudi Arabia accuses the Iran-backed Houthis of violating international law by targeting civilians on the Saudi border. 

Saudi Arabia has also itself been accused of carrying out scores of unlawful air strikes in Yemen that have killed civilians in their homes, in schools and at weddings. 

The UN said on Friday that cruise missiles and drones used to target Saudi oil facilities in May 2019 were from Iran. 

The Houthis had claimed the attack, which halted production at Saudi oil company Aramco, but Saudi Arabia and the US insisted that Iran was to blame. 

Saudi media reported in May that it would be deploying its own missile systems near oil fields after the US said it would be withdrawing. 

Saudi Arabia formed the coalition in 2015, after the Houthis seized the capital Sanaa. 

The UN had projected that Yemen would pass a death toll of 230,000 by the end of 2019, a figure that combines both deaths from fighting and deaths from diseases exacerbated by the fighting.

Over five years of war and the coronavirus pandemic have led Yemen's healthcare system to "collapse completely," according to Doctors Without Borders (MSF) - as a recent, Saudi-sponsored fundraising campaign for Yemen fell $1bn short of its $2.3bn goal.