Riyadh: The Saudi Arabian Air Defence forces on Monday intercepted seven ballistic missiles launched by Yemeni Houthi rebels, according to authorities.
According to Turki al-Malki, the spokesperson for the Saudi Arabia-led Arab coalition who blamed Iran for the attack, three of the projectiles were heading towards Riyadh, one to Khamis Mushait in the province of Asir, another to Najran and the other two to Jizan, reports Efe news.
The interception of the missiles resulted in the dispersal of fragments of the shells, which fell over nearby residential areas, killing an Egyptian civilian, according to al-Malki.
Material damage was also reported, but the spokesperson did not provide further details on its extent.
“This aggressive and random act by the Iran-backed Houthi group proves that the Iranian regime continues to support the armed Houthi group with qualitative capabilities,” said Al-Malki, adding that the missile attack aimed to threaten the security of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the region.
The Houthi-run news agency Saba claimed that the Army Missile Force sympathizing with the rebel group had launched ballistic missiles against several targets in Saudi Arabia, without providing further details.
The attack coincides with the third anniversary of the Saudi-led Arab coalition’s military intervention in Yemen, which provoked the world’s worst humanitarian crisis in 2017.
The Saudi-led military operations in Yemen, which began on March 26, 2015, has targeted the Houthi rebels that have fought against Yemen’s ruling forces of President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi since 2014.
Ballistic missile attacks by the rebels against Saudi territory have become a regular practice, but very rarely have shells reached Riyadh.
Saudi authorities blame Iran for these assaults and accuse it of threatening Saudi Arabia’s national security and supporting Shia groups in the region.