Saudi Arabia says it intercepted missiles fired from Yemen

Remigio Civitarese
Febbraio 21, 2020

The Pentagon announced that Iran continues sending sophisticated weapons to the Houthis in Yemen, in violation of its global obligations, supporting these accusations with pictures of Iranian weapons that were allegedly transferred in two shipments seized by U.S. forces in less than three months.

"We'll spend a lot of time talking about the security issues with the threat from the Islamic Republic of Iran in particular", Mr Pompeo told reporters in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa before heading to Riyadh.

Pompeo's stop in Oman to meet Sultan Haitham bin Tariq Al Said is the highest level USA visit to the country since he was selected successor to longtime ruler Sultan Qaboos bin Said, who died January 10 after 50 years in power.

The State Department said the two also discussed USA concerns about human rights.

"In each of the visits I've had to the kingdom during my time both as Central Intelligence Agency director and as secretary of state, we raised these important issues, these issues that matter a lot to the American people", Pompeo said.

Tehran has consistently denied USA accusations about providing military support to the Houthis fighting the government recognised by the UN-backed by the Saudi-led military coalition.

The Boston-area physician is one of several dual Saudi-American citizens either imprisoned or barred from leaving Saudi Arabia in cases related to a wider crackdown against critics and perceived foes of the crown prince. Some 200 people were detained in the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Riyadh for weeks, and even months, and forced to sign over billions of dollars in assets to the government during the shakedown, which helped the young crown prince consolidate power.

Pompeo had said he would likely raise with Saudi authorities the case of a Saudi-American doctor facing trial who has been barred from leaving the kingdom and allegedly tortured. It is unclear what specific charges Fitaihi faces.

Saudi Arabia has come under increased scrutiny for its alleged human rights abuses under the crown prince. A critic of the crown prince, Khashoggi was living in exile and writing about the prince's crackdown on critics and activists when agents who worked for the Saudi prince killed and dismembered him inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

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