UAE warplanes took part in Yemen strikes: coalition

UAE warplanes took part in Yemen strikes: coalition
# 27 March 2015 22:50 (UTC +04:00)

Baku-APA. United Arab Emirates warplanes "intensively" participated in air strikes against Shiite rebels and their allies in Yemen Friday, the Saudi-led coalition said, APA reports quoting AFP.

All members of the Arab coalition contributed to the operation but "Emirati air forces participated intensively," spokesman General Ahmed Assiri told reporters in Riyadh.

He said Yemen's air space was completely under coalition control, and that aircraft seized by the Huthis had been destroyed.

Coalition warplanes Friday raided Al-Anad airbase, seized by the Huthis earlier this week, north of the key southern city of Aden, Assiri said.

The strikes were aimed at preventing the Huthis using the base, he said, vowing to "do what is necessary to protect the legitimacy of the government" in Aden.

Aden is the stronghold of embattled President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi, who fled there after escaping house arrest by rebels in Sanaa last month.

Assiri said the airstrikes had also targeted Huthi supply lines between the north and south.

The operations targeted Huthi air defence systems, rockets and anti-aircraft artillery.

Coalition aircraft targeted "limited movements (of Huthis) along Yemen's northern border using Apache (helicopters) and ground artillery," said Assiri.

He urged Yemeni civilians to keep away from rebel "gatherings or hideouts".

"Such militias try to use citizens or civilian gatherings as human shields to avoid coalition strikes," said Assiri.