Arab coalition jets target Houthi drone sites in Yemen’s capital

The operation seeks to reduce Houthi drone capabilities. (SPA)
Updated 20 April 2019
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Arab coalition jets target Houthi drone sites in Yemen’s capital

  • The attacks are a continuation of previous strikes aimed at reducing Houthi capabilities

Saudi-led Arab coalition jets targeted Houthi drone sites in Yemen’s capital, Sanaa, on Saturday morning, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.

Coalition spokesperson, Col. Turki Al-Maliki, said that at 12:40 a.m. (GMT) the Arab coalition carried out the military operation to destroy Houthi drone stores.

The targeted area was in a former Republican Guard camp in the vicinity of the presidential palace that was seized by the Houthi militia in 2014.

Al-Maliki confirmed that the operation was consistent with international humanitarian law. He stated that the leadership of the joint forces of the coalition have taken measures to protect civilians and spare them from collateral damage outside the perimeter of the camp.

The Houthi militia uses military camps near residential neighborhoods and civilian facilities as military zones for manufacturing workshops, which include installation of ballistic missiles and drone workshops.

This strategy is an attempt at using civilians as human shields, which is a clear and explicit violation of international humanitarian law, the coalition spokesperson said.

Al-Maliki said that the operation was an extension of the previous military operations that were carried out on Jan. 19, Jan. 31, Feb. 9, March 23 and April 10, to destroy the Iran-backed Houthi militia’s military capabilities.

Earlier this month, five people were injured, including a woman and a child, when two Houthi drones targeting civilian areas in Saudi Arabia were intercepted and destroyed.

While in early March, Saudi Arabia’s Royal Air Defense Force again shot down a Houthi drone that was flying toward the Kingdom.


Pentagon plans to send 5,000 more troops to Middle East amid Iran threat: US officials

Updated 23 May 2019
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Pentagon plans to send 5,000 more troops to Middle East amid Iran threat: US officials

  • Tehran and Washington have this month been escalating rhetoric against each other
  • The US military deployed a carrier strike group, bombers and Patriot missiles to the Middle East earlier this month

WASHINGTON: The US Department of Defense is considering a US military request to send about 5,000 additional troops to the Middle East amid increasing tensions with Iran, two US officials told Reuters on Wednesday.
Tehran and Washington have this month been escalating rhetoric against each other, following US President Donald Trump’s decision to try to cut Iran’s oil exports to zero and beef up the US military presence in the Gulf in response to what he said were Iranian threats.
The officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the request had been made by US Central Command, but added that it was not clear whether the Pentagon would approve the request.
The Pentagon regularly receives — and declines — requests for additional resources from US combatant commands throughout the world.
One of the officials said the requested troops would be defensive in nature.
This appeared to be the latest request for additional resources in the face of what US officials have said are credible threats from Iran against US forces and American interests in the Middle East.
The Pentagon declined to comment on future plans.
“As a matter of longstanding policy, we are not going to discuss or speculate on potential future plans and requests for forces,” Commander Rebecca Rebarich, a Pentagon spokeswoman, said on Wednesday.
Acting US Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said on Tuesday that while threats from Iran in the Middle East remained high, deterrence measures taken by the Pentagon had “put on hold” the potential for attacks on Americans.
The US military deployed a carrier strike group, bombers and Patriot missiles to the Middle East earlier this month in response to what Washington said were troubling indications of possible preparations for an attack by Iran.
Trump had warned on Monday that Iran would be met with “great force” if it attacked US interests in the Middle East.