UN: Missiles fired at Saudi Arabia have ‘common origin’

Shi'ite Houthi rebel fighters ride a truck in Sanaa, in this file photo. (REUTERS)
Updated 11 December 2017
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UN: Missiles fired at Saudi Arabia have ‘common origin’

NEW YORK: UN officials have found that missiles fired at Saudi Arabia by Yemen’s Houthi militias appear to have a “common origin,” but they are still investigating US and Saudi claims that Iran supplied them, according to a confidential report.
The officials traveled to Saudi Arabia to examine the debris of missiles fired on July 22 and Nov. 4, wrote UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in the fourth biannual report on the implementation of UN sanctions and restrictions on Iran.
They found “that the missiles had similar structural and manufacturing features which suggest a common origin,” said Guterres in the Friday report to the UN Security Council, seen by Reuters.
The report comes amid calls by the US for Iran to be held accountable for violating UN Security Council resolutions by supplying weapons to the Houthis.
The report said the UN officials saw three components, which Saudi authorities said came from the missile fired on Nov. 4. The components “bore the castings of a logo similar to that of the Shahid Bagheri Industrial Group” — a UN-blacklisted company.
However, the panel said it “as yet has no evidence as to the identity of the broker or supplier” of the missiles, which were likely shipped to the Houthis in violation of a targeted UN arms embargo imposed on Houthi leaders in April 2015.
Yemeni Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Abdulmalik Al-Mikhlafi said “real opportunities for a peaceful solution” have decreased after the assassination of former President Ali Abdullah Saleh.
According to the Saudi Press Agency, he stressed that the current war had been imposed on the Yemeni people because of the Iran-backed Houthi coup.


Sheriff: 8 people dead after Missouri tourist boat accident

Updated 7 min 41 sec ago
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Sheriff: 8 people dead after Missouri tourist boat accident

BRANSON: An amphibious vehicle capsized on a lake in Missouri with more than 20 people on board, leading to a “mass casualty incident,” the Southern Stone County Fire Protection District said on Thursday.
Several people were taken to hospital following the incident on the “Ride the Ducks” amphibious vehicle on Table Rock Lake, Stone County, near Branson, Missouri, the fire district said in posts on Twitter.
Stone County Sheriff Doug Rader said there were fatalities when the boat carrying 31 people, some of them children, capsized and sank, television station KY3 News reported.
Rader said he did not know how many people were killed and divers were on the scene searching for passengers, KY3 News reported.
The Stone County Sheriff’s Office could not immediately confirm the report.
Ride The Ducks, a company in Branson, Missouri, that operates amphibious duck vehicles in the area, did not respond immediately to a request for comment.
Duck amphibious vehicles have been involved in a number fatal accidents around the world in the past two decades, with some sinking or being swamped or others colliding with vehicles.