Yemen's Houthi rebels claim drone attack on Israel

The Houthis are "part of the axis of resistance" against Israel.

November 01, 2023 02:58 am | Updated 05:43 pm IST - Sanaa

The Houthis, who seized Yemen’s capital Sanaa in 2014 and control large swathes of the country, are “part of the axis of resistance” against Israel. 

The Houthis, who seized Yemen’s capital Sanaa in 2014 and control large swathes of the country, are “part of the axis of resistance” against Israel.  | Photo Credit: AFP

Yemen's Iran-backed Houthi rebels fired drones towards Israel on Tuesday in retaliation for its war against Hamas, a senior official from the group told AFP.

"These drones belong to the state of Yemen," Abdelaziz bin Habtour, Prime Minister of the Houthi government, said when asked about the launch towards Eilat in southern Israel.

The Houthis, who seized Yemen's capital Sanaa in 2014 and control large swathes of the country, are "part of the axis of resistance" against Israel and are fighting with "words and drones", he added.

Israel's military earlier reported a "hostile aircraft intrusion" that set off warning sirens in the area of Eilat, a resort town on the Red Sea.

"There is no threat in this region and no danger," Israeli military spokesman Daniel Hagari told a separate televised briefing.

Israel blamed the Houthis for a similar drone attack on Friday in which its aircraft intercepted "hostile targets" headed for southern Israel.

Six persons were lightly injured in neighbouring Egypt when debris hit a building in the Sinai resort of Taba, just across the border from Eilat, the Egyptian Army said at the time.

On October 19, the U.S. Navy said it shot down three land-attack cruise missiles and "several" drones that had been fired by the Houthis, possibly at Israel.

The Houthis will release a statement later on Tuesday with more details of their involvement in the "resistance" against Israel, Bin Habtour said.

Israel has been pounding the Gaza Strip since gunmen from the Palestinian militant group Hamas stormed across the border on October 7 and, according to Israeli officials, killed more than 1,400 people, most of them civilians.

Since then, more than 8,300 people have been killed, many of them children, according to the Health Ministry in Hamas-run Gaza, an impoverished slice of land which is home to 2.4 million people.

Concerns are high over a regional conflagration especially as Iran, which financially and militarily backs Hamas -- but insists it had no involvement in the October 7 attack -- has loyalists and proxy fighters in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen.

Since the Gaza conflict began, there have been a string of attacks on US forces in Iraq and Syria as well as almost daily exchanges of fire across the Israel-Lebanon border between Hezbollah and the Israeli army.

On Sunday, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi warned on X, formerly Twitter, that Israel had "crossed the red lines, and this may force everyone to take action", without elaborating.

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