DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Yemen’s Houthi rebels for the first time Tuesday claimed missile and drone attacks targeting Israel, drawing their main sponsor Iran closer into the ongoing Israel-Hamas war in the Gaza Strip and further raising the risks of a regional conflict erupting.
The Houthis, who have held Yemen’s capital, Sanaa, since 2014 as part of that country’s ruinous war, claimed three attacks on Israel in a later military statement, without elaborating on the timeframe of the operations and whether Tuesday’s salvos represented one or two attacks.
For Israel, Tuesday’s attack marked an incredibly rare reported in-combat use of the Arrow missile defense system, which intercepts long-range ballistic missiles with a warhead designed to destroy targets while they are in space, according to the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies. headtopics.com
Saree did not identify the specific weapons used in the attack. However, the use of the arrow suggests it was a ballistic missile. The Houthis have a variant of its Burkan ballistic missile, modeled after a type of an Iranian missile, believed to be able to reach over 620 miles to strike near Eilat.
“This is something we will continue to monitor,” Ryder said. “We want to prevent a broader regional conflict.” The Houthis follow the Shiite Zaydi faith, a branch of Shiite Islam that is almost exclusively found in Yemen. The rebels’ slogan has long been: “God is the greatest; death to America; death to Israel; curse the Jews; victory to Islam.” headtopics.com
Iran has long denied arming the Houthis even as it has been transferring rifles, rocket-propelled grenades, missiles and other weaponry to the Yemeni militia using sea routes. Independent experts, Western nations and United Nations experts have traced components seized aboard other detained vessels back to Iran.
Yemen’s Houthi rebels claim attacks on Israel, drawing their main sponsor Iran closer to Hamas warYemen’s Houthi rebels have for the first time claimed missile and drone attacks targeting Israel. That draws their main sponsor Iran closer into the ongoing Israel-Hamas war in the Gaza Strip and further raises the risks of a regional conflict erupting. Read more ⮕