The missile, fired by Houthi militants on Saturday, reportedly targeted the civilian areas of the southwestern Saudi province of Najran, close to the border with Yemen. However, some reports claim the short-range missile was aimed at a military base in the area.
This is the second intercepted attack on the Najran province this month, with the first one taking place on January 5 and targeting the barracks of the Saudi army.
The intensified standoff has been accompanied by UN accusations against Iran, claiming Iran violated the UN arms embargo imposed on Yemen by directly or indirectly supplying Yemeni militias with missiles and drones.
The tensions in war-torn Yemen had escalated in November 2017, when former allied Houthis and units loyal to former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh started clashing, which resulted in the death of Saleh on December 4. The clashes were explained by the Saleh's readiness to start negotiations with the Saudi-led coalition provided that they lift the coutry's blockade.
2.5 years of conflict have pushed #Yemen to the brink of famine, resulting in the world’s largest hunger crisis. On Monday, 4 cranes arrived in Hodeidah Port. These cranes will allow for faster delivery of urgently needed humanitarian supplies. pic.twitter.com/gDRMIgBpfV— World Food Programme (@WFP) 19 января 2018 г.
The military conflict dates back to 2015, when the government of President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi started fighting against the Houthi rebels, backed by Saleh army units. The Saudi-led coalition of mostly Persian Gulf Arab countries has interfered in the conflict since March 2015 upon Hadi's request, carrying out airstrikes against the Houthis.