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Yemen war gaining wider regional dimension

Jun 26,2019 - Last updated at Jun 26,2019

The recurring attacks by the Iranian-backed Houthis on civilian targets in the heart of Saudi Arabia is an ominous sign that Iran is determined to give the Yemeni war a wider regional dimension that will encompass neighbouring Saudi Arabia and, possibly, other Gulf countries.

It was on June 21 when the Houthis attacked Abha civilian airport by a sophisticated missile, injuring scores of civilians and causing serious damage to the airport. The missile deployed in the terrorist attack was of a sophisticated vintage that could have been supplied to the Houthis only by Iran.

Few days later, another similar attack was launched by the Houthis on the same airport, killing one person and injuring several civilians.

There was once hope that the Yemeni war, now in its fourth year, would be contained and then halted altogether through the UN mediation efforts. But the recent escalation by the Houthis shows beyond a shadow of a doubt that they, and their Iranian supporters, have no intention of stopping the war in Yemen that left literally millions of civilians either starved or homeless, with children bearing the brunt of the armed conflict.

This wider escalation of the Yemeni war would no doubt give US President Donald Trump more ammunition against Iran. President Trump has been accusing Tehran all along of fermenting regional chaos and instability, by directly getting involved in the conflicts in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen.

It is regrettable that the international community has not been able to stop the carnage and destruction in Yemen and prevent it from spilling over to Saudi Arabia. Yet, this is exactly what is happening before the very eyes of the United Nations.

At this rate, President Trump may very well end up waging an open war against Iran, especially when the international community remains silent in the face of the wider Yemeni war.

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