| 20 May 2024, Monday |

Yemen’s Houthi rebels hit Aramco, other facilities in Saudi Arabia

Houthi rebels launched four attacks on the kingdom, Saudi-led military coalition early Sunday, the state media reported.

The attacks damaged civilian cars and homes but caused no casualties, it said.

It was the latest escalation in a slate of Houthi cross-border attacks on Saudi Arabia, just as peace talks between the two sides remain stalled. The ongoing conflict between Saudi Arabia and the Iran-backed Houthi rebels has taken a devastating toll on Yemen since 2015.

A facility run by state-owned oil company Aramco in Jizan, southern Saudi Arabia was targeted by the Houthis early Sunday, the coalition said.

They also hit a desalination plant in Al-Shaqeeq, a power station in the southern Dhahran al Janub city, and a gas facility in Khamis Mushait, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.

Photos and a video clip posted by the state news agency showed firefighters tackling a blaze at the power station.

Local news outlet Al Ain later reported the coalition saying that it intercepted and destroyed nine drones launched in the kingdom’s southern region that targeted economic facilities.

The coalition also foiled an attack on an Aramco Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) facility in the Saudi port city of Yanbu, according to state television.

Sunday’s attacks come days after an oil refinery in the Saudi capital Riyadh was hit by a drone strike on March 10. The attack was claimed by the Houthis.

What’s the latest in the conflict?

The six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council invited the Houthis for talks on Yemen on the conflict in Riyadh from March 29.

But earlier this week, the rebels said they would welcome talks with the coalition if the venue is a neutral country, including some Gulf states.

It also said that the priority was lifting “arbitrary” restrictions on Yemeni ports and Sanaa airport.

Yemen has been drawn into a civil war since 2014 when the Iran-backed Houthis ousted the government.

The rebels took control of the country’s northern parts, including the capital, Sanaa, forcing the internationally recognized government to flee to the south.

The Saudi-led coalition has been fighting the rebels in Yemen since 2015.

In response, the Houthis have frequently targeted the kingdom’s southern region with missile and drone attacks.

  • DW