Saudi forces intercept 4 ballistic missiles

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A new Iranian precision-guided ballistic missile is launched as it is tested at an undisclosed location October 11, 2015. REUTERS/farsnews.com/Handout via Reuters

Saudi forces have destroyed four ballistic missiles launched from Yemen which were targeting two border cities, Al Arabiya local news reported on Tuesday.

The cities are Abha and Khamis Mushait and they are among other border areas that have been targeted in such attacks since the beginning of Saudi-led war against Houthi militias in Yemen that completed two years this week.

Al Arabiya reported that most of those ballistic missiles have been destroyed before reaching the ground, while tens of civilians died in such attacks.

Besides the interception, Saudi Arabia usually destroyed the launchers of those ballistic missiles through airstrikes.

It said that the war shows no signs of ending, especially after the recent development of the planting of sea mines in the Red Sea by Houthis.

NAN reports that on March 26, 2015, a nine-member Sunni Arab coalition launched airstrikes, followed by ground forces and a naval blockade, targeting Houthi rebels and allied forces loyal to former President Ali Abdullah Saleh.

The stated aim of the coalition, which also includes Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain, was to restore President Abed Hadi to power and counter alleged Iranian influence.

What started as largely a domestic political conflict has morphed into a broader regional power struggle between Saudi Arabia and Iran, with multiple armed actors on the ground fighting a war with no end in sight.

The air and ground wars have killed at least 10,000 people, according to the UN.

The World Food Programme also estimated that about 17 million Yemenis, well over half of the country’s population, are in “crisis” or “emergency” food situations.

Human rights monitors say the coalition air raids are to blame for the majority of civilian deaths.

The Saudis reject responsibility for the bulk of the civilian casualties, and human rights groups also have reported that militias on the ground have used child soldiers, and planted mines in civilian areas.