Yemen’s army says it has advanced aircraft as well as the coordinates of legitimate targets in Riyadh and Abu Dhabi, which can be hit in retaliation for the war being waged against the country by Saudi Arabia and its regional allies, including the United Arab Emirates.
In comments carried by the al-Masirah TV on Saturday, army spokesman Brigadier Yahya Sare’e said the Yemeni military was ready to retaliate “any major attack” on the port city of Hudaydah, the entry point for most of the country’s commercial goods and vital aid.
“We have aerial photographs and coordinates of dozens of headquarters, facilities, and military bases of the enemy,” he said. “The legitimate targets of our forces extend to the capital of Saudi Arabia and to the emirate of Abu Dhabi.”
Sare’e also said that the Yemeni armed forces have “manufactured advanced generations of attack aircraft” and would soon make new systems “functional.”
Saudi Arabia and a number of its allies launched a devastating war on Yemen in March 2015 in order to bring a former government that had been submissive to Riyadh back to power.
Hudaydah, a lifeline for millions of Yemenis, has seen some of the heaviest fighting in the Saudi-led war.
The aggressor forces routinely target residential areas inside cities and towns across Yemen, causing massive civilian casualties.
Yemeni army soldiers and allied Houthi fighters have on a limited number of occasions fired ballistic missiles at Riyadh and other Saudi cities in retaliation for the Saudi-led attacks on residential areas.
Saudi Arabia often claims that it intercepts incoming Yemeni missiles, but a close study of evidence by The New York times in 2017 clearly suggested that in one of the most high-profile of such attacks, the projectile — launched deep into Saudi territory — had in fact landed unimpeded, bypassing American-made Patriot missiles and potentially other defenses used by Riyadh. Saudi Arabia claimed that it had foiled that attack, which targeted the Riyadh airport.
The Saudi-led war has so far taken a heavy toll on Yemen’s infrastructure and put 80 percent of its 28.6 million people in critical need of assistance.
According to a report by the Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED), a nonprofit conflict-research organization, the war has claimed the lives of around 56,000 Yemenis.