Saudi officials and Houthi rebels in Yemen issued contradictory statements on the morning (local time) of Tuesday, May 21, regarding an incident at the Najran Regional Airport (EAM) in Najran province. According to Houthi media sources, a drone packed with explosives struck an arms depot at a military base inside EAM, causing a fire to break out. However, Saudi military officials said that the rebels had attempted to target a civilian site in Najran. Further details regarding the alleged attack have not been released.
Tensions have increased between Saudi Arabia and Houthi rebels in recent days. According to social media reports, at least two ballistic missiles allegedly fired by Houthi forces were intercepted near Taif and Jeddah on May 19-20. Saudi officials have not confirmed if the strikes took place.
Reports estimate that Houthi militants have fired over 200 missiles at Saudi Arabia since 2015, when Saudi Arabia began backing the Yemeni government against Houthi separatists in the Yemeni Civil War. Southern Saudi Arabia is a frequent target of Houthi missile attacks, and Riyadh has also seen several missile attacks in the last several months; however, they rarely result in many damages or casualties.
Individuals in Najran are advised to monitor developments to the situation and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities or their home governments.
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