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Saudi Arabia intercepts ballistic missile northeast of Riyadh
05 November 2017, 01:38 | Rufus Hill
Saudi Arabia shoots down missile aimed at Riyadh airport, Yemen rebels claim responsibility
Yemen's Defense Ministry said the missile attack "shook the Saudi capital" and the operation was successful.
Despite thousands of airstrikes and a blockade of Yemen from the sea and air, the Saudi-led coalition has failed to push the Houthis out, although it does claim to have reduced the territory the rebels control. The missile was allegedly aimed at the King Khalid International Airport.
The missile was sacked across Saudi Arabia's southern border by Yemen's Houthi rebels, according to several Houthi-owned media outlets, including Al-Masirah and SABA.
The coalition didn't name the country.
This is the first time a Houthi missile has come this close to a heavily populated area, and it appears to be the farthest such a missile has reached inside Saudi Arabia.
A Saudi military spokesman condemned the attack in a statement, saying the missile was sacked "indiscriminately" towards a populated civilian area.
"And then we have a claim from Houthi rebels in Yemen that they fired a long-range missile at Riyadh and the Saudi air defence forces saying it has intercepted a long distance missile that it believes was sacked from Yemen". Another airstrike days earlier destroyed a hotel on the outskirts of Sanaa, leaving dozens dead. "Today's missile attack comes in response to Saudi killing innocent Yemeni civilians".
The Saudi air force shot down the alleged weapon on Saturday, Al Arabiya reports, adding that no damage has been caused. "We are entering a new phase", he said.
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