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Saudis Say Another Yemeni Rebel Missile Intercepted Near City Of Najran


Yemenis carry the coffins of victims of alleged Saudi-led air strikes during a funeral in Sana'a on December 26.

Yemen's Shi'ite rebels said they fired a ballistic missile targeting a military camp in the southwestern Saudi city of Najran on January 5, but the kingdom said its air defenses intercepted the projectile.

The rebel announcement, carried by the rebel-run Al-Masirah TV, said the firing of its short-range ballistic missile was"successful" and that the missile hit its target in Saudi Arabia with "high accuracy."

The Saudi-led coalition that is backing Yemen's government in a civil war with the Huthi rebels said it "intercepted and destroyed" the missile, however, and asserted that it was the latest example of Iran providing weapon to the rebels -- a charge denied by Tehran.

The coalition in a statement said there was "minor damage" to some private property from falling missile parts, but there were no deaths.

The rebels later said they fired another missile targeting Saudi-backed forces along Yemen's western coast.

The Shi'ite rebels have previously fired missiles targeting the Saudi mainland, including the capital, Riyadh, the city's international airport, and a royal palace -- all of which Saudi forces claim to have intercepted.

The two sides have been at war since March 2015. The Saudi-led coalition, which is armed and backed by the United States, has repeatedly accused Shi'ite-led Iran of arming the rebels.

Last month, the United States provided what it said was "undeniable" evidence that Tehran is violating international law by arming the rebels, showing reporters in Washington missile fragments the Pentagon obtained from Saudi Arabia.

Iran has dismissed the U.S. and Saudi claims as "fake and fabricated."

The nearly three-year stalemated war in Yemen has killed more than 10,000 people, displaced 3 million, damaged critical infrastructure, fueled a cholera outbreak, and pushed the Arab world's poorest country to the brink of famine.

Based on reporting by AP and AFP
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