Saudi Arabia says Yemen rebel ballistic missile shot down

A Saudi Patriot Missile is seen at an airbase in Khamis Mushait in this file photo. (SPA)
Updated 05 February 2018
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Saudi Arabia says Yemen rebel ballistic missile shot down

RIYADH: Saudi air defenses intercepted a ballistic missile fired at the Kingdom by Yemen’s Houthi rebels on Monday, state media reported.
The attack was launched from Yemen’s northern governorate of Saada, a Houthi stronghold, and “intercepted” at 7:23 local time (0423 GMT), Col. Turki Al-Maliki told state news agency SPA.
Maliki, spokesman for the Saudi-led military coalition supporting the government in Yemen, said the missile was headed toward the city of Khamis Mushait — about 160 kilometers (100 miles) north of the border.
Riyadh had warned that “Iranian-manufactured ballistic weapons” threatened the Kingdom’s security following an attack it said was intercepted near Riyadh airport in November.
Maliki on Monday accused the Houthis of “repeatedly targeting densely populated cities” and delivering the weapons to the insurgents.
The United States, which backs the Saudi campaign against the Houthis, has also accused Iran of being at the origin of the ballistic missiles, a charge denied by Tehran.
Russia said last week that evidence presented by the US was inconclusive, signalling it would oppose a bid to slap UN sanctions on Tehran.


Le Drian says not aware France has Khashoggi tapes, contradicts Erdogan

Updated 36 min 35 sec ago
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Le Drian says not aware France has Khashoggi tapes, contradicts Erdogan

  • Erdogan on Saturday said France, Germany and Britain had been handed the tapes
  • Le Drian said Erdogan has a 'political game to play in these circumstances'

PARIS: French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian on Monday said France was not in possession of recordings related to the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi as far as he was aware, contradicting remarks by Turkey's president.

Khashoggi, a critic of de facto Saudi ruler Prince Mohammed bin Salman, was killed in Saudi Arabia’s Istanbul consulate last month in a hit which President Tayyip Erdogan says was ordered at the “highest levels” of the Saudi government.

Erdogan on Saturday said France, Germany and Britain had been handed the tapes, but in an interview on France 2, Le Drian said this was not the case, as far as he knew.

Asked if that meant Erdogan was lying, Le Drian said: “it means that he has a political game to play in these circumstances.”

Khashoggi’s murder provoked international outrage but little concrete action by world powers against Saudi Arabia, the world's largest oil exporter and a supporter of Washington's plans to contain Iranian influence across the Middle East.

US President Donald Trump and Erdogan have discussed how to respond to the killing last month of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, a White House official said on Sunday.