On December 30, a Soviet-made 3M9 anti-aircraft missile that was fired by the Houthis (Ansar Allah) was found in al-Wadi district near the central Yemeni city of Ma’rib.
Pro-Saudi media sources falsely claimed that the missile was launched at Ma’rib city. However, the missile was likely launched by the Houthis’ air defense force at a fighter jet of the Saudi-led coalition.
— الحدث اليمني (@Alhadath_Ymn) December 30, 2021
The 3M9 missile is the main armament of the SA-6 medium-range air-defense system. The Houthis operate a locally-upgraded variant of the system dubbed “Fatir-1”.
The SA-6 system has a range of 25 kilometers and engagement altitude of up to 8 km with its standard armament, the 9M336 missile, guided by semi-active radar homing. However, the Houthis’ Fatir-1 is supposedly “heat-guided” with a range of 22 km only.
On December 10, the Houthis targeted a F-15 fighter jet of the Royal Saudi Air Force that was flying over Ma’rib with a Fatir-1 missile.
The Houthis boosted their air defense capabilities in the last few years. During 2021, the group shot down more than a dozen drone over Yemen, most of them belonged to the Saudi-led coalition.