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Houthi rebels down Saudi tornado warplane in Yemen Open in fullscreen

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Houthi rebels down Saudi tornado warplane in Yemen

The Houthis have intensified attacks on the kingdom [Getty]

Date of publication: 15 February, 2020

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The Tornado aircraft came down on Friday in northern Al-Jawf province during an operation to support Yemeni government forces.

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Houthis, Yemen
A Saudi fighter jet crashed in conflict-torn Yemen, the Riyadh-led military coalition said Saturday, as the Houthi rebels said they downed the plane.

The Tornado aircraft came down on Friday in northern Al-Jawf province during an operation to support Yemeni government forces, the coalition said in a statement carried by the official Saudi Press Agency.

The coalition did not specify the fate of the crew.

The rebels' Al-Masirah television said the jet was downed by the rebels using an "advanced surface-to-air missile". 

The rebels' military spokesperson, Yahya Saria  described the attack on "enemy forces" referring to Saudi-led coalition forces, which was conducted using an advanced air-to-ground missile.

The rebels reported multiple coalition air strikes on Saturday in the area where the plane went down as local residents gathered near the debris, according to Al-Masirah.

Read also: Yemen in Focus: UAE, Sudan announce withdrawal of troops as coalition 'reconsiders' brutal war

The coalition intervened against the Iran-backed rebels in 2015, first with air and naval forces and later with ground forces as well. 

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The fighting has killed tens of thousands of people, most of them civilians, and sparked what the UN calls the world's worst humanitarian crisis.

On Wednesday, the coalition said it will put on trial military personnel suspected of being behind deadly air strikes on Yemeni civilians.

The coalition has been widely criticised for the high civilian death toll from its bombing campaign, which has prompted some Western governments to cut arms deliveries to the countries taking part.

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