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UAE Fears Houthi Missile Threat to Gulf States, Joins Airstrikes in Yemen

Sputnik News

17:35 26.03.2015(updated 18:00 26.03.2015)

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is taking part in the military operation against the Houthi militant group in Yemen because of a perceived missile threat to the Persian Gulf states, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Mohammed Gargash said Thursday.

DUBAI (Sputnik) – On Wednesday, Saudi Arabia announced a launch of a military operation against the Houthis, who currently control large parts of Yemen, including the capital Sanaa. Houthi militants have reportedly captured large stocks of weaponry from Yemen military sites.

'This difficult decision was prompted by the need to resist Houthi aggression and by a strategic threat to the Persian Gulf, represented by [Houthi] missiles. They have become a growing and unacceptable threat,' Gargash said on his Twitter page.

Bahrain, Qatar and Egypt and other states are also participating in the Saudi-led coalition. The Gulf nations claim the campaign is a response to a request by Yemen's ousted President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, currently said to be in hiding in Oman.

Saudi Arabia is reportedly using around 100 fighter jets and 150,000 personnel in the military operation. The airstrikes target Yemen infrastructure, including government buildings and the Sanaa airport, but have also struck residential areas and inflicted many casualties.

Air raids killed 65 people, local government sources told Sputnik earlier on Thursday.

The Houthi militants forced President Hadi and his government to resign in late January. Hadi was under house arrest in Sanaa before he fled to Aden in February, quickly disavowing his resignation.


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