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Yemen to continue legitimate retaliatory attacks as long as Saudi war, siege persist: Army spox

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)
The spokesman for Yemen's Armed Forces, Brigadier General Yahya Saree (File photo)

The spokesman for Yemen's Armed Forces says Yemeni army troops and allied fighters from Popular Committees are capable enough to defend the country against the Saudi war, emphasizing their “legitimate” retaliatory attacks will continue as long as the Riyadh regime and its allies press ahead with their onslaught and blockade.

“The discourse of threats and intimidation would not help. The [Saudi-led] aggression would not have continued up to the present if such a strategy had been effective. The enemy has only one option: Stop the aggression and lift the siege,” Brigadier General Yahya Saree said in an exclusive interview with Arabic-language al-Masirah television network on Thursday night.

He added, “Yemeni forces will continue to exercise their legitimate right to defend their compatriots. We will not stand idly by whilst our countrymen and women are being killed as a result of raids and siege. We have options that have not revealed yet.”

Saree further noted that the Yemeni forces have fairly developed defensive and offensive capabilities and that they have used not all their military prowess in battles against the Saudi-led coalition and its mercenaries, advising the other side to come to terms with the bitter reality.

“We will continue to target military and sovereign institutions that are spearheading the [military] aggression against our people at the depths of Saudi Arabia. We will make sure that our designated targets are far away from Saudi people, who are being oppressed under the rule of the House of Saud,” the senior Yemeni military figure pointed out.

Commenting on the Fourth Deterrent Balance Operation, Saree said sensitive sites in the Saudi capital Riyadh were struck with great precision during the operation, leaving Saudis and Americans in a state of confusion.

‘Saudis use high-powered cluster bombs in Sana’a, elsewhere’

Separately, the Yemeni Ministry of Human Rights announced in a statement that Saudi-led military aircraft used high-powered cluster bombs in their Wednesday airstrikes against residential neighborhoods in the capital province of Sana’a and elsewhere in the country. The Sana’a attack claimed the lives of a child girl and an elderly woman and left six others injured,

The statement noted that the Saudi-led warplanes deliberately bombarded the medical supply depot at Hospital 48 in al-Sabeen district of Sana’a province, which severely damaged the facility and terrorized patients receiving treatment there.

“Such an attack represents a real threat to the lives of hundreds of sick citizens, who used to benefit from the hospital’s services. It also indicates that member states of the coalition of aggression seek to destabilize the region, and their immoral and inhuman actions threaten both regional and international peace and security,” the ministry highlighted.

The Yemeni Ministry of Human Rights also warned against the uptick in the number of attacks by the Saudi-led coalition and its mercenaries across Yemen, saying such acts constitute a blatant violation of the provisions and rules of the international humanitarian law.

The ministry then held the UN Security Council and UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres responsible for such criminality, noting that removal of the Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen's war from an annual blacklist of parties violating children's rights emboldened the alliance to continue the massacre of women and children.

“The decision to remove the Saudi-led coalition from the child-killer blacklist is a major cover-up for the continued murder of women and children, especially as there are no international monitors and accountability for the perpetrators of these crimes in Yemen,” it underscored.

The ministry finally renewed its call for an end to the all forms of aggression and blockade on Yemen, and formation of an independent and impartial international commission to investigate the massacres and crimes committed by the Saudi-led coalition and its mercenaries.

Saudi Arabia and a number of its regional allies launched a devastating war on Yemen in March 2015 in order to bring former president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi back to power and crush the popular Houthi Ansarullah movement.

The US-based Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED), a nonprofit conflict-research organization, estimates that the war has claimed more than 100,000 lives over the past five years.

More than half of Yemen’s hospitals and clinics have been destroyed or closed during the war by the Saudi-led coalition, which is supported militarily by the UK, US and other Western nations.

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