"All airports, ports, border crossings and areas of any importance to Saudi Arabia and the UAE will be a direct target of our weapons, which is a legitimate right," according to AFP quoting a statement released by the Houthi rebels' office.
The Houthis' statement comes just two days after Saudi Arabia shot down a missile launched by the Yemeni rebels, preventing casualties. Commenting on the attack, the Saudi-led coalition that has been conducting an operation in Yemen since 2015, has stated that it considered the missile launch an act of war against the kingdom and reserved the right to respond to Iran, who it holds accountable for the attack, in a claim strongly denied by Tehran.
Most recently, Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman also accused Tehran over alleged arms supplies to the Houthis, with Tehran lashing out at Riyadh's claim it has described as being "contrary to reality." The statement echoed a remark made by US President Donald Trump, who had blamed Iran for the missile launch by Yemeni rebels.
Following the attack, the Saudi-led coalition has reportedly decided to close all Yemen's ground, air and sea ports, explaining the move by an attempt to limit flaws in existing inspection procedures that have resulted in a supply of ballistic missiles and other military equipment to Houthis.
Yemen has been engulfed in a violent conflict between the government and Houthi rebels backed by army units loyal to former President Ali Abdullah Saleh since 2015, with a coalition backed by Saudi Arabia launching an aerial operation in the country at the request of President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi.