Saudi Ministry of Defense: Houthis Crossed a Red Line Attacking Saudi Border
May 08, 2015
The following is a summary of a press conference yesterday with Brig. Gen. Ahmed bin Hasan Asiri, advisor in the Office of the Minister of Defense of Saudi Arabia, regarding Operation Renewal of Hope.
A Royal Saudi Land Forces Apache helicopter experienced a technical malfunction and made an emergency crash landing in Saudi Arabia. The pilot sustained minor injuries and no one was killed.
The cities of Najran and Jazan in Saudi Arabia have come under attack from Houthi militias using Katyusha rockets and mortar shells. This aggression has now continued for three consecutive days. The Houthis have primarily targeted civilian targets, including homes, farms, schools, and a hospital near the Saudi-Yemen border.
The Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs has reiterated that the Kingdom is keen to reach a humanitarian ceasefire with the militia groups in order to provide humanitarian and medical relief for the Yemeni people. The Houthis have responded to this proposal with aggression on Saudi cities, the killing of Saudi citizens, and deliberate attacks on innocent civilians in Aden.
The Houthis’ actions are without a comprehensive military goal or strategy. The militias are targeting Saudi civilian homes for the sake of killing and creating chaos during the ceasefire. Houthis responsible for these attacks will pay for their actions.
Brig. Gen. Asiri asserted that the focus of the coalition’s military operations has shifted from protecting the legitimate government in Yemen and the Yemeni citizens, to preserving the safety and security of Saudi cities along the border.
Saudi Arabia and its coalition allies will now retaliate by targeting all Houthi commanders and any grouping of Houthi militias. The zone for this retaliation will not be limited in scope. Houthis close to the border will be targeted, as will militias in Saadah, Maran and their surrounding suburbs.
The security and safety of the Saudi border remains a top priority for the coalition and the Saudi Armed Forces. The Houthis have crossed a red line by attacking the border and will pay for it. Unless the objectives set by political leadership are achieved, the Saudi Armed Forces and coalition will retaliate with force on the ground.