World Bulletin / News Desk
Saudi air-defense on Wednesday morning intercepted two missiles fired from Yemeni territory towards the cities of Abha and Khamis Mushait in the kingdom’s southwest, according to officials from a Saudi-led Arab coalition established last year to fight Yemen’s Shia Houthi militia group.
In a statement published by the official Saudi Press Agency, coalition commanders said the rockets had been intercepted without causing any damage.
"Coalition air forces immediately took the initiative, targeting missile launch-pads located on the outskirts of [Yemen’s northwestern] Amran province," the statement read.
The officials did not explicitly state what group was responsible for Wednesday morning’s missile barrage, but the Houthis have claimed responsibility for similar attacks in the past.
On the same day, the Saudi-led coalition carried out several airstrikes targeting Houthi positions east of Yemeni capital Sanaa.
"Coalition warplanes carried out three airstrikes targeting positions held by [the Houthis and allied forces loyal to former President Ali Abdullah Saleh] in the Jabal Yam area of the Nihm district," the Yemeni army’s media office tweeted.
The airstrikes, the army said, coincided with fierce clashes on the ground as pro-government forces attempted to wrest the area from Houthi control.
The reports, however, have yet to be independently verified by Houthi sources.
Last Saturday, following the suspension of Kuwait-hosted peace talks, the Yemeni army launched a fresh operation aimed at retaking Sanaa.
Yemen has been racked by chaos since late 2014, when the Houthis and their allies overran Sanaa and other parts of the country, forcing President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi and his Saudi-backed government to temporarily flee to Riyadh.
In March of last year, Saudi Arabia and its Arab allies launched a massive military campaign in Yemen aimed at reversing Houthi military gains and restoring Hadi’s embattled government.
Backed by Saudi-led airstrikes, pro-Hadi forces have since managed to reclaim large swathes of the country’s south -- including provisional capital Aden -- but have failed to retake Sanaa and other strategic areas.
In April of this year, the Yemeni government and the Houthis entered into UN-sponsored peace talks in Kuwait aimed at resolving the conflict, in which more than 6,400 people have been killed and another 2.5 million forced to flee their homes.
Talks were suspended last week, however, due to repeated violations of a fragile ceasefire, especially in and around Yemen’s central Taiz province.Last Mod: 10 Ağustos 2016, 15:23