2nd LD-Writethru: Yemen's Houthis claim multiple ballistic missile attacks on Saudi capital

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SANAA, June 23 (Xinhua) -- The Yemeni Houthi militia said they launched multiple ballistic missile and drone attacks early Tuesday morning on Saudi Arabia's capital of Riyadh, targeting vital military facilities.

"Large numbers of long-range ballistic missiles and bomb-laden drones hit the headquarters of the Defense Ministry, the military intelligence agency and King Salman Air Base in Riyadh," Houthi military spokesman Yahya Sarea said in a statement aired by the Houthi-run al-Masirah television.

"The attack also targeted other Saudi military facilities in the Saudi regions of Jizan and Najran," Sarea said.

"The attack came in response to the unjust economic blockade and military aggression on the Yemeni people," Sarea said, adding "we will launch more attacks until the blockade is lifted and the aggression is stopped."

Meanwhile, the Saudi-owned Al Arabiya television reported that "the Saudi-led coalition forces intercepted and destroyed three ballistic missiles and eight drones launched from Yemen by the Houthi militia towards the Saudi border regions of Jizan and Najran."

It was the latest in a series of cross-border attacks by the Yemeni Houthis against Saudi Arabia since the Yemeni civil war erupted five years ago.

Last year, attack on the Saudi Aramco facilities in the east of the kingdom that claimed by the Yemeni Houthis had knocked out half of the Saudi oil output.

Yemen has been mired in civil war since late 2014, when the Iran-backed Houthis seized control of much of the country's north and forced the Saudi-backed government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi out of Sanaa.

The Saudi-led coalition intervened in the Yemeni conflict in early 2015 to support Hadi's government.

The war has killed tens of thousands of people, mostly civilians, displaced 3 million and pushed more than 20 million to the brink of starvation. Enditem

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