Houthi loyalists are shown in Sanaa, Yemen, on February 20 as they protest against attacks waged by a Saudi-led coalition. (Mohammed Hamoud/Getty Images)

Saudi Arabia Says Houthis Launched Missiles at Its Cities

The Saudi-led coalition waging war against Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen has accused the latter of launching ballistic missiles toward unidentified Saudi Arabian cities, saying on Friday that it was able to intercept them. The state-owned Saudi Press Agency reported that an initial coalition statement gave no further specifics other than to say that the missiles had been launched from the Yemeni capital Sanaa. “They were launched in a systematic, deliberate manner to target cities and civilians, which is a flagrant defiance of international humanitarian law,” Turki Al Maliki, a coalition spokesman, said, adding that Sanaa had “become a Houthi militia assembly, installation and launching hub for ballistic missiles that target the [Saudi] kingdom.” Despite signs earlier this year that the coalition’s war on behalf of the internationally recognized Yemeni government was losing steam, the Houthis accused Saudi-led aircraft of having killed dozens of civilians in an airstrike last Saturday, and also claimed to have downed a Saudi Tornado jet fighter over northern Yemen the day before. The coalition insisted that the plane went down for reasons other than the hostilities.

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