At least three civilians killed in Saudi airstrike near Yemeni capital Sana’a

The Saudi Arabia-led military coalition has increased its airstrikes inside Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen since last week. A Saudi airstrike last Monday damaged the Sana’a international airport, preventing the flow of critical humanitarian aid to the country

December 27, 2021 by Peoples Dispatch
Saudi airstrikes in Yemen
(Photo: Al Mayadeen)

Houthi forces in Yemen announced on Sunday, December 26, that they have completely liberated the northern Jawf province from forces loyal to the Saudi-led coalition. The spokesperson of the Houthi armed forces, Yahya Sarei, claimed that operation ‘Fazr al-Sahra’a’, or ‘Operation Desert Dawn’, to liberate al-Yatma was successfully completed and the Houthis now have full control over the northern province which shares borders with Saudi Arabia, Yemen News Agency (Saba) reported.  

The announcement comes a day after the Saudi-led coalition bombed different locations in Yemen on Saturday, killing at least three people, including a child and a woman in Ajama near the capital Sana’a. The Saudi coalition claimed that the airstrikes were carried out in response to a Houthi missile attack earlier in the day which killed two people in its southern Jazan province.

The deaths in Jazan are the first casualties inside Saudi Arabia due to a Houthi strike in the last three years. Saudi Arabia’s official press agency said that the airstrikes in Sana’a were carried out to prevent attempts to transfer weapons.    

Since last week, the Saudi-led coalition has increased the number of airstrikes inside Houthi-controlled areas. On Saturday, coalition forces carried out at least 24 airstrikes in Marib province where the Houthis are trying to take control over the strategically important Marib city from the coalition. 

The Saudi coalition also carried out airstrikes at the Sana’a airport last Monday, making it inoperational and leading to a halt in the critical aid supply. 

Saturday’s airstrikes in Sanaa and Marib mark an escalation in the six-year ongoing war between Houthi forces and the Saudi-led international coalition which supports the government of deposed president Abdrabbuh Mansur al-Hadi, now living in exile in Riyadh. 

The Saudi-led coalition, often backed by the US, UK and France, has carried out thousands of air strikes inside Houthi-controlled areas, killing thousands of civilians and destroying civilian infrastructure. It has also imposed a complete air, sea and land blockade of these areas which has restricted the crucial supply of food, medicine and other necessities. 

According to the UN, apart from causing nearly 400,000 deaths and the displacement of millions of people, the Saudi-led war has pushed the majority of Yemenis – over 24 million people to the verge of hunger and death with their survival dependent on foreign aid. The UN has called the situation in Yemen the “world’s worst humanitarian disaster of the century.”