Yemen-based Houthi fighters have recently launched a string of missile and drone attacks on Saudi territory. It is the latest flare-up in an ongoing power struggle between the rebels, who are supported by Iran, and the Saudi-backed Yemeni government. The Houthis took over Yemen’s capital Sana’a and other areas of the country in 2014.
The Houthi rebels announced the attack on Abha international airport via their Al-Masira television channel as a “wide operation targeting warplanes.” Abha airport has been repeatedly targeted by Houthi attacks in recent weeks, which have killed one person and wounded dozens more.
A rebel missile attack on Abha airport on June 12 wounded 26 civilians and drew promises of “stern action” from the Saudi-led coalition. On June 23, another rebel attack on the same airport killed a Syrian national and wounded 21 other civilians, according to the coalition.
Following the recent attacks, Saudi state media have reported an intensification of air raids on rebel positions in the northern Yemeni province of Hajjah and the capital Sana’a.
The ongoing conflict between the rebels and the Saudi-backed government has unleashed what the UN calls “one of the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.“ Yemen is already one of the Arab world’s poorest countries, millions of people are facing starvation and displacement.