Yemen rebels target Saudi capital with missiles, explosions heard in Riyadh
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Yemen rebels target Saudi capital with missiles, explosions heard in Riyadh

Saudi military said to intercept two projectiles, which international observers have previously said are Iranian-supplied

Illustrative screen capture from a video claiming to show Saudi missile interceptors shooting down a missile over Riyadh on March 26, 2018. (Screen capture: Twitter)
Illustrative screen capture from a video claiming to show Saudi missile interceptors shooting down a missile over Riyadh on March 26, 2018. (Screen capture: Twitter)

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Saudi media said Wednesday that ballistic missiles were fired by Yemen’s Shiite rebels at the Saudi capital, Riyadh.

State television said Saudi air defenses intercepted two ballistic missiles over the capital, the latest in a series of attacks claimed by rebels, known as Houthis, in neighboring Yemen. Two explosions were heard in the city, according to an AFP photographer.

A spokesman for the Saudi-led coalition said Saudi air defenses hours earlier had also intercepted a ballistic missile originating from Yemen and targeting Saudi Arabia’s southern city of Jizan.

The rebels quickly claimed responsibility for attacking “Riyadh Dry Port and other economic targets” in the Saudi capital with Burkan 2H ballistic missiles.

The rebels also claimed the Jizan attack, via their Al-Masirah TV.

Saudi Arabia and its allies launched a war in March 2015 on behalf of Yemen’s internationally recognized government against the Houthis, who control Yemen’s capital, Sanaa, and much of the country’s north.

Since then, the Houthis have launched some 100 missiles into neighboring Saudi Arabia, mostly near the border.

The United Nations, Western nations and Saudi Arabia say Iran supplies the Houthis with long-range missiles capable of reaching Riyadh. Iran denies arming them.

On Tuesday Saudi Arabia, regional rival of Iran and longtime US ally, said it “supports and welcomes” US President Donald Trump’s decision on Tuesday to withdraw from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.

Saudi Arabia accused Iran of “taking advantage of the revenue generated by the lifting of the sanctions to destabilize the region,” the foreign ministry said.

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