Washington condemns Houthi attack on Saudi airport Abha

RIYADH: The United States condemned the attack by the Houthis at dawn on Tuesday by a plane on the Abha International Airport in southern Saudi Arabia, wounding nine civilians, saying it was "with Iranian-made weapons and technology."

"The United States strongly condemns the attack by the Houthis today on Abha airport in Saudi Arabia, the third attack of its kind in less than three weeks," State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortigas said in a statement.

"These attacks threaten the lives of many people and cause innocent civil injuries," the statement said.

"We call for an immediate end to these violent acts, which only exacerbate the conflict in Yemen and deepen distrust," she said.

"We stand firm with our Saudi partners in defending their borders against these persistent threats by the Houthis who rely on Iranian weapons and technology to carry out such attacks," the statement said.

"We urge all parties to work with UN Special Envoy Martin Griffith to reach a political settlement and end the conflict in Yemen," the foreign ministry said in a statement.

On Tuesday, nine civilians were wounded in an unmanned drone attack on Abha International Airport in southern Saudi Arabia, the Saudi-led military alliance said.

The coalition said in a statement that "the terrorist attack led to the injury of 9 civilians, 8 of them Saudis and one of Indian nationality, all injuries are initially stable and were all transferred to specialized hospitals."

The Houthis announced through the Al-Masirah channel, speaking at dawn on Tuesday that they carried out by the "Air Force Path, a large operations targeting the aircraft terminals of the aircraft at Abha International Airport."

Abha is a mountainous city that is a destination for Saudis during the summer to escape the high temperatures in Riyadh and Jeddah.

The Houthis, who are close to Tehran and face constant coalition raids since 2015 that have caused heavy civil casualties, have intensified their rocket and helicopter attacks across the border in recent weeks.

In its statement, the coalition renewed the accusation that Iran is the one who ordered the Yemeni rebels to launch the attack on Abha airport.

"The continuation of such terrorist acts and high quality capabilities provests the involvement of the Iranian regime in supporting the Huthi terrorist militia," the coalition said, stressing that the Huthi attacks "could escalate into a war crime targeting civilians and civil objects in a systematic manner. "

Since 2014, Yemen has been the scene of a dispute between the Huthis group and forces loyal to the internationally recognized government of Yemen. The conflict escalated as a Saudi-led military alliance intervened in March in support of the government.

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