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Yemen's Houthis fire missile at Saudi capital

Houthi rebels reportedly fired a ballistic missile at Riyadh's international airport [Getty]

Date of publication: 4 November, 2017

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Yemen's Houthi rebels fired a ballistic missile at Riyadh on Saturday, Saudi state news reported, which was intercepted and destroyed near the international airport.

Yemen's Houthi rebels fired a "ballistic missile" at Riyadh on Saturday, Saudi Arabia state media reported. 

Saudi's air defence intercepted and destroyed the missile, Saudi state TV said. State-run news channel al-Ekhbariya said the missile "was of limited size (and) no injuries or damage" were reported.

The missile was destroyed near Riyadh's King Khaled international airport, which was functioning normally, it added.

Yemen's Iran-backed Houthi rebels claimed they had fired the missile, targeting the airport, the Houthis' al-Masirah television said.

Saudi Arabia's southern neighbour Yemen has been torn apart by a war between the Saudi-backed government of President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi and Houthi rebels backed by Iran.

A Saudi-led coalition intervened in 2015 to prop up Hadi's government after the Shia Huthis seized the capital Sanaa.

The rebels continue to hold much of the country.

United Nations-backed talks have failed to broker a political settlement to end the fighting, which has left more than 8,600 people dead since the coalition intervened.

A cholera outbreak has claimed more than 2,100 lives in Yemen since April as hospitals struggle to secure supplies amid a coalition air and sea blockade.

The UN has warned Yemen now stands on the brink of famine.

The coalition was briefly included on the annual list of shame last year before a threat by Saudi Arabia to cut off its funding to UN programmes forced a reversal.

Human rights groups have urged governments backing the coalition, including the United States, Britain and France, to suspend all weapons sales to the Gulf monarchy.

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