Saudi-led coalition foils attack by Iranian-made drone near Abha airport

The Saudi-led coalition said it has foiled an attempted attack by a UAV in Saudi Arabia's southern city of Abha. (Reuters)
Updated 27 May 2018
0

Saudi-led coalition foils attack by Iranian-made drone near Abha airport

JEDDAH: The Saudi-led Arab coalition to support legitimacy in Yemen has foiled an attempted attack by an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) in Saudi Arabia’s southern city of Abha, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Saturday.

Coalition spokesman Col. Turki Al-Maliki said that at 1:45 p.m., the air defense unit assigned to Abha International Airport detected an unidentified flying object heading toward the airport. “The unit dealt with the threat and destroyed it according to the rules of engagement,” he said.

Al-Maliki clarified that inspections carried out by specialists in the coalition’s joint forces revealed that the wreckage belonged to the Houthi militias’ unmanned aerial vehicle with specifications of Iranian UAV “Ababil.” It was trying to attack the civilian airport, which is protected under international humanitarian law, he said. 

Al-Maliki said there was minimal damage caused by the UAV’s destruction. He said the joint forces command of the coalition targeted the unit responsible. 

He said the coalition will strike with an iron fist all those who are involved in terrorist activities that threaten the safety and security of Saudi nationals, residents, economy and key installations.

 


World applauds as Saudi women take the wheel

A Saudi woman and her friends celebrate her first time driving on a main street of Alkhobar city in eastern Saudi Arabia on her way to Bahrain on June 24, 2018. (AFP / HUSSAIN RADWAN)
Updated 25 June 2018
0

World applauds as Saudi women take the wheel

  • As the de facto ban on women driving ended after more than 60 years, women across the Kingdom flooded social media with videos of their first car trips
  • The celebrations even reached as far as France, where Aseel Al-Hamad, the first female member of the Saudi national motorsport federation, drove a Formula 1 racing car in a special parade before the French Grand Prix at Le Castellet 

JEDDAH: The world awoke on Sunday to images and video footage many thought they would never see — newly empowered Saudi women taking the wheel and driving their cars.

As the de facto ban on women driving ended after more than 60 years, women across the Kingdom flooded social media with videos of their first car trips, while some police officers among the large number out on the streets distributed roses to the first-time drivers.

The celebrations even reached as far as France, where Aseel Al-Hamad, the first female member of the Saudi national motorsport federation, drove a Formula 1 racing car in a special parade before the French Grand Prix at Le Castellet.

“I hope doing so on the day when women can drive on the roads in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia shows what you can do if you have the passion and the spirit to dream,” she said.

In a tribute to Saudi female drivers, the Lebanese soprano Hiba Tawaji released a special video of a song she performed live in Riyadh at a concert last December “Today women in Saudi Arabia can legally drive their cars,” she said. “Congratulations on this achievement, this one’s for you!”

Back home in Saudi Arabia, the atmosphere was euphoric. “It’s a beautiful day,” businesswoman Samah Algosaibi said as she cruised around the city of Alkhobar. 

“Today we are here,” she said from the driver’s seat. “Yesterday we sat there,” she said, pointing to the back.

“I feel proud, I feel dignified and I feel liberated,” said Saudi Shoura Council member Lina Almaeena, one of the first women to drive in the Kingdom.

She told Arab News that the event was changing her life by “facilitating it, making it more comfortable, making it more pleasant, and making it more stress-free.”

Almaeena urged all drivers to follow the traffic and road safety rules. “What’s making me anxious is the misconduct of a lot of the drivers, the male drivers. Unfortunately they’re not as disciplined as they should be. Simple things such as changing lanes and using your signals — this is making me anxious.

“But I’m confident: I’ve driven all around the world when I travel, especially when I’m familiar with the area. It’s really mainly how to be a defensive driver because you have to be.”