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Saudi Arabia says five wounded as Yemen rebel drones intercepted

By AFP - Apr 03,2019 - Last updated at Apr 03,2019

A police trooper stands guard on a street in the Red Sea port city of Hodeida, Yemen, February 13 (Reuters file photo)

RIYADH — Saudi air defences intercepted two drones launched by Houthi rebels from neighbouring Yemen but debris wounded five civilians, including a child, a Saudi-led coalition fighting the rebels said on Wednesday. 

The drones targeted Khamis Mushait, home to a major airbase in the southwest of kingdom, coalition spokesman Colonel Turki Al Maliki said in a statement carried by the official Saudi Press Agency.

"At 9:35 pm [1835 GMT] on Tuesday, the Royal Saudi Air Defence systems detected two unidentified objects headed towards civilian [areas]," he said, adding they were "intercepted and destroyed". 

The Yemeni rebels have repeatedly fired ballistic missiles into Saudi Arabia and even claimed attacks on airports in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, the two main cities of the United Arab Emirates, the kingdom’s principal coalition ally.

Saudi Arabia has said the missiles were all intercepted by air defences, but one civilian was killed by shrapnel. The UAE has denied coming under missile attack.

The rebels say their missile attacks have targeted airbases from which the coalition has conducted a devastating bombing war since March 2015 in support of the Yemeni government.

Most of those killed in the conflict have been civilians, while millions have been brought to the brink of famine.

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