Press TV – Yemen’s armed forces have showcased their domestically-manufactured naval missiles at an exhibition in the western port city of Hudaydah, with senior officials and military commanders of the Houthi Ansarullah movement in attendance.
Saleh al-Samad, the president of Yemen’s Supreme Political Council, was among the officials attending the event, during which the missiles belonging to the country’s Navy and Coastguard were put on display, the official Saba’ Net news agency reported on Monday.
Speaking during the event, a senior Yemeni navy commander said the “high-precision” missiles, dubbed Mandab 1, are manufactured at home.
Ansarullah, the national army and popular groups have joined forces to defend the country against an ongoing brutal military campaign launched in 2015 by the Saudi kingdom and a coalition of its allies with the aim of reinstalling the former Riyadh-backed government in Yemen.
Yemen’s stiff resistance has prevented Saudi Arabia from achieving the goals of war, despite spending billions of dollars on the war and enlisting the cooperation of Western countries, particularly the US and the UK.
The exhibition was held a day after the Yemeni army said that it had targeted Saudi Arabia’s King Khalid International Airport in Riyadh with a long distance Borkan H2 ballistic missile in retaliation for the Riydah regime’s bloody attacks against the impoverished nation.
The Saudi-led coalition, in a Sunday statement, put the blame for the missile strike on Iran, and unleashed threats against the Islamic Republic. The Riyadh regime has long the Houthis of receiving financial and arms support from Tehran.
Tehran has repeatedly rejected such baseless accusations. The Iranian Foreign Ministry rejected the Sunday statement as “destructive, irresponsible, provocative,” stressing that Yemenis had showed an “independent” reaction to the Saudi-led acts of aggression against the nation.
On Sunday, the kingdom announced that it is shutting down all Yemen’s air, sea, and land border, after Yemen targeted the international airport near Riyadh.
Yemen ‘on verge of starvation’
In response to the Saudi blockade, the head of the UN World Food Program (WFP) warned Monday that hundreds of thousands of children in Yemen would be “on the brink of starvation” if the siege lasts for even two weeks.
David Beasley said that about 70 percent of Yemen’s 28 million population “do not know where they’re going to get their next meal.”
Beasley said the UN agency is reaching only 7 million Yemenis, “partly because of lack of funds and partly because of lack of access.”
“I can’t imagine this will not be one of the most devastating humanitarian catastrophes we’ve seen in decades” if access remains shut down, he said.
Meanwhile, Ansarullah spokesman Mohammad Abdulsalam has warned that any measure to hinder the movement of Yemeni ships or to close the country’s port Yemen could entail grave consequences, which could also negatively impact international shipping in the Red Sea.
More than 12,000 people have been killed since the onset of the campaign more than two and a half years ago. Much of the Arabian Peninsula country’s infrastructure, including hospitals, schools and factories, has been reduced to rubble.