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Yemen's retaliatory missile attack targets Saudi airport

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Screen grab from a handout video provided by Yemen’s War Media Center on April 11, 2018 shows the launching of a ballistic missile from an undisclosed location. (Via AFP)

Yemen’s popular Houthi Ansarullah movement has fired a ballistic missile at an airport in southwest Saudi Arabia in retaliation for fresh airstrikes by the kingdom. 

Yemen’s al-Masirah television network said on Monday that the Houthis had fired a Badr-1 ballistic missile at Jizan's airport which successfully hit the target. 

A Saudi television report said the country’s air defense systems had intercepted and destroyed the projectile.

The Houthis have fired a salvo of missiles at Saudi Arabia in recent months, including the capital Riyadh, while the kingdom launched thousands of airstrikes on Yemen, killing hundreds of civilians at hospitals, schools and markets. 

Riyadh frequently reports intercepting missiles fired from Yemen, but various reports have pointed out that US-made Patriot interceptors were repeatedly failing against the counterattacks. 

Last month, The New York Times described the Patriot a ”struggling missile defense system.”

“The Patriot system has faced recent scrutiny after it failed to protect Saudi Arabia’s capital from missiles fired by Houthi militants in Yemen,” the paper wrote.

A month earlier, Washington-based Foreign Policy magazine published an article, describing the Patriot as “a lemon of a missile defense system,” and casting doubt on the veracity of the kingdom’s claims of successfully neutralizing the counterattacks.

Saudi Arabia relies heavily on the United States to continue its invasion of Yemen. More than 14,000 have died since Riyadh and its allies launched their military campaign against the country.

Washington has been refueling Saudi warplanes engaged in the offensive, and providing logistical support to the warfare.

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