Saudi Arabia “did not need to wait for Yemen to become another missile base that threatens the security and safety of Saudi Arabia, as the Iranians planned to do, to turn Yemen into a military base, from which they could attack the kingdom,” said Asiri, who serves as both the spokesman for Saudi operations in Yemen and as advisor to the defense minister.
Houthi rebels have targeted Saudi Arabia with 48 ballistic missiles since the country began joint military operations with other Arab states in Yemen in 2015. He said a total of 138 missiles have targeted either Saudi territory or its forces. It is believed that Iran, which has one of the largest military stockpiles in the Middle East, is supplying Yemen’s Houthi rebels with military equipment.
The Houthis (also known as Ansar Allah) are a rebel group from Yemen’s northern region. They have fought against the Yemeni government since 2004, including the current U.S. and Saudi supported government of President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi. Yemen is currently divided between Hadi’s government and the Houthi rebels.
Saudi Arabia has been criticized for killing civilians while fighting the Houthis. More than one-third of Saudi strikes in Yemen have hit civilian areas, according to a study by the Yemen Data Project released in September.
Asiri claimed that Saudi Arabia has shown restraint by avoiding a ground-based operation.
“It did not happen for several reasons: First, there would have been be a large deployment of ground forces which would have resulted in a large number of civilian and military casualties. One of the objectives of the coalition is to rid Yemeni civilians of the Houthi rebel presence in their daily lives,” said Asiri. “There are around 100,000 Saudi forces stationed on the border that could have occupied Yemen in a few days, but we wanted to support legitimacy in Yemen with the least possible losses on both sides. We are like a technical team in a hostage situation.”
Asiri said Saudi Arabia aims to support the Yemeni government and prevent Houthi incursions in Saudi territory. He claimed that the Saudi-led coalition has made progress in beating back the rebellion. However, the Yemeni capital of Sanaa is still under Houthi control, while several other cities are in contention.
Iran Briefing | News Press Focus on Human Rights Violation by IRGC, Iran Human Rights
Aug 22, 2017 Comments Off on Iran says it can resume high-level uranium enrichment in five days if nuclear deal is ‘violated’
Aug 20, 2017 Comments Off on Iran’s Threat to Pull Out of Nuclear Deal a ‘Crystal Clear Message to the US’
Aug 18, 2017 Comments Off on Iran shells Kurdistan border area, no casualties reported
Aug 15, 2017 Comments Off on Iran: Raising the Death Penalty Bar
Aug 21, 2017 Comments Off on IRGC: Hatami’s leadership promises increasing deterrence power
Aug 19, 2017 Comments Off on Iranian general says Kurdish independence referendum ‘a US plot’
Aug 17, 2017 Comments Off on US-Iran tensions over nuclear pact cause alarm in Europe
Aug 14, 2017 Comments Off on Iran Parliament Approves Increase in Funding to Its Missile Program
Aug 20, 2017 Comments Off on Iran’s Threat to Pull Out of Nuclear Deal a ‘Crystal Clear Message to the US’Iran’s Threat to Pull Out of Nuclear Deal a ‘Crystal Clear Message to the US’ Earlier this week, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned that Tehran may pull out from the nuclear deal if the...
Aug 19, 2017 Comments Off on Iranian general says Kurdish independence referendum ‘a US plot’Iranian general says Kurdish independence referendum ‘a US plot’ Iranian Brigadier General Naqdi, the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps’ (IRGC) deputy commander, said that the Kurdistan independence...
Jul 14, 2016 Comments Off on Corps’ one hundred thousand of triggered missiles in Lebanon:An official Israel-threatening by CorpsIran Briefing: Since August 7, 1979, when Ayatollah Khomeini declared the last Friday of Ramadhan as “Quds Day”, the Islamic Republic has always tried to hold an imposing ceremony by using state resources as well as requiring people’s involvement. This year’s Quds march had fundamental...