Yemen Houthis Ready For US Invasion

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THE leader of Yemen’s Houthi Ansarullah movement has warned that the US military is preparing the ground for an act of aggression against the war-torn Arab country.

In a televised speech on Thursday, Abdul Malik Badreddin al-Houthi slammed Washington’s recent missile attacks against three mobile radar sites on Yemen’s Red Sea coast, saying the nation and armed forces should stay vigilant and stand fully ready to face the invaders.

‘The US is after laying the groundwork for making an invasive move against western coastal Hudaydah Province,’ the statement said, adding, ‘Through this measure, the US is after building up pressure on and harassing the people of Yemen.

‘The Yemeni nation will defend its territory, freedom and independence, seeing it as its right to use any legitimate means against violent invasions,’ the Houthi leader said. He made the comments on the anniversary of the October 14, 1963 onset of an armed struggle which forced Britain into withdrawal from southern Yemen.

The US on Wednesday hit Yemen’s radar sites after claiming that the USS Mason, a guided-missile destroyer, had come under Yemeni attack for the second time in four days. Yemeni officials have rejected the allegations as ‘unfounded’ aimed at providing a pretext for the intelligence and logistics support which the US has provided to Saudi Arabia in its military campaign.

US accusations came in the wake of a Saudi aerial attack on a funeral which killed more than 140 people attending a wake for the father of Yemen’s interior minister in the capital Sana’a on Saturday.

Image released by the US Navy shows a guided-missile destroyer USS Mason (DDG 87) preparing to conduct a replenishment-at-sea at an undisclosed location on August 3, 2016.

The Ansarullah movement on Thursday ‘expressed readiness to work with any United Nations or international body to investigate these allegations and to punish those behind this, regardless who they may be,’ the Saba Net news agency reported.

Spokesman for Yemeni forces Brigadier General Sharaf Luqman denounced US missile strikes, saying Yemen reserves the right to defend itself in the face of such threats. The Pentagon, however, said it was preparing for possible new strikes in Yemen.

‘This is about protecting our people, period,’ Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook said even though he acknowledged that the US has yet to determine who was responsible for the alleged launch of missiles.

‘We don’t know who was pulling the trigger,’ but the missiles were launched from ‘Houthi-controlled territory in Yemen,’ Cook claimed. Many observers believe US allegations of Yemeni attacks on its warships are aimed at turning away attention from the Sana’a carnage and reducing pressure on Washington over its aid to the Saudis.

They say the Yemeni army and its allies are unlikely to have opted for opening a new front, which would only undermine their position in the battle against Saudi Arabia.

Washington, along with the UK, has been a major arms provider to Saudi Arabia, which has been at war against its southern neighbour since March 2015.

The US has supported the Saudi military and its allies with aerial refuelling and targeting assistance during the war on Yemen. Yemeni forces have rejected ‘baseless’ US claims of having targeted an American destroyer in the Red Sea, which prompted missile strikes on the Arab country by the United States.

The rebuttal on Thursday came a day after the Pentagon claimed that the USS Mason, a guided-missile destroyer, had come under the Yemeni attack for the second time in four days.

‘These allegations are unfounded and the army and the Popular Committees have nothing to do with this action,’ Yemen’s Saba news agency quoted an unnamed military official allied with the Houthi movement as saying.

The Pentagon said it hit Yemen’s radar sites on Wednesday after the destroyer was targeted by a missile which crashed into the sea before reaching the vessel. US officials claim the USS Mason and the USS Ponce, an amphibious warfare ship, were previously targeted on Sunday in a failed missile attack from territory in the Red Sea off the coast of Yemen.

The Yemeni official dismissed the Pentagon’s accusations as an attempt to provide a pretext for the intelligence and logistics support it has provided to Saudi Arabia in its military campaign against Yemen. ‘Such claims aim to create false justifications to step up attacks and to cover up for the continuous crimes committed by the Saudi coalition against the Yemeni people,’ said the official.

US accusations came in the wake of a Saudi aerial attack on a funeral which killed more than 140 people attending a wake for the father of Yemen’s interior minister in the capital Sana’a on Saturday.

The carnage sparked international outcry, drawing attention to military and logistics support provided by the US and its allies to the kingdom and their continued sale of arms to Saudi Arabia.

The US military provides aerial refuelling to Saudi bombers carrying out airstrikes in Yemen. Saturday’s raid on Sana’a prompted charges of US complicity in the killing of civilians which constitutes an apparent war crime, according to Human Rights Watch.

The carnage also came less than a month after the US Senate endorsed a military deal with Saudi Arabia worth $1.15 billion. Many observers believe US allegations of Yemeni attacks on its warships are aimed at turning away attention from the Sana’a carnage and reducing pressure on Washington over its aid to the Saudis.

They say the Yemeni army and its allies are unlikely to have opted for opening a new front, which would only undermine their position in the battle against Saudi Arabia. The Saudi campaign has killed more than 10,000 Yemenis since its onset in March 2015.

On Wednesday, the leader of Yemen’s Houthi Ansarullah movement Abdul-Malik al-Houthi said the Saudi military aggression against Yemen was being carried out under the supervision of the US. As he spoke, thousands of people rallied in Sana’a to denounce the Saudi airstrike that killed dozens of civilians during a funeral ceremony.

People took to the streets in Sana’a on Wednesday, chanting slogans against the kingdom’s ruling dynasty, such as ‘Death to the Saud family’. We will not give in to the Americans,’ chanted the protesters, who had gathered to commemorate the day of Ashura, the martyrdom anniversary of Imam Hussein (PBUH), the third Shia Imam.

In a televised speech on Wednesday, Abdul-Malik al-Houthi, the leader of Yemen’s Houthi Ansarullah movement, called for ‘revenge’ attacks against Saudi Arabia. Yemen has been under relentless Saudi airstrikes since March 2015, when Saudi Arabia launched its military aggression against the neighbouring country in an attempt to undermine the Ansarullah movement and reinstate Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, a staunch ally of Riyadh, who has resigned from his post as the country’s president.