On January 23rd, a missile or a drone was reportedly intercepted in the skies above Riyadh, the Saudi-Arabian capital.
Royal #Saudi Air Defence successfully intercepted and destroyed a missile launched by the Iran-backed #Houthi terrorist militia. The missile was aimed to target civilian areas in #Riyadh city. pic.twitter.com/bsTC1d0eNY
— بن هباس ?? (@5a1di) January 23, 2021
— Saudi-Expatriates.com (@saudiexpat) January 23, 2021
Some reports claim it was a ballistic missile.
The #Saudi-led coalition fighting against #Yemen's #Iran-backed #Houthi rebel group have said that they intercepted a missile today that was aimed towards its capital, #Riyadh. pic.twitter.com/cnvRm7wwhZ
— On the Ground News (@OGNreports) January 23, 2021
Users on Twitter said that they had 3 massive explosions in the city.
— Oops! (@oopsnewskw) January 23, 2021
صاروخ حوثي فوق الرياض pic.twitter.com/VGW5fWrrqG
— Qatari (@Qatari40670737) January 23, 2021
According to the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen, “an enemy air target towards Riyadh was intercepted and destroyed,” according to the state-run Al-Akhbariya channel, without giving further details.
The Houthis did not immediately acknowledge launching a missile or a drone toward Riyadh.
The U.S. Embassy in Riyadh issued a warning to Americans calling on them to “stay alert in case of additional future attacks.”
“I heard a loud sound and thought that something had fallen to the ground. The whole house shook for a while,” a Saudi woman living in the Sulaymaniyah neighborhood in central Riyadh told AFP.
The King Khalid International Airport website in Riyadh reported delays in the arrival of many flights, but it was not immediately clear if this was linked to the attempt to target the city.
On January 22nd, the Saud-led coalition announced that it had thwarted “two terrorist operations that the Houthi militia tried to carry out,” and stated that its forces destroyed a drone bomb launched by the Houthis towards the Kingdom, and a booby-trapped boat south of the Red Sea.
In November 2020, the rebels attacked a distribution station for petroleum products belonging to Aramco in the north of the city of Jeddah, in the west of the Kingdom, with a missile, which led to a fire in a fuel tank.
More than a year before this attack, Aramco facilities near Riyadh were subjected to unprecedented attacks.
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