Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the United States on Wednesday lashed out at the Iran-backed Houthis for their “egregious terrorist attacks” against the Kingdom, warning the international community that the Yemeni militia group believes it can act with impunity.
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“We are exercising extreme restraint in the face of a daily barrage of weaponized drones and ballistic missiles,” Princess Reema Bandar said in a statement posted to the Saudi Embassy in Washington’s website.
Princess Reema’s comments come as the Houthis have escalated their attacks on Saudi Arabia in recent weeks, specifically following the Biden administration’s decision to remove the group from its terror list.
The Ambassador noted that Iran continues to provide weapons, training & technical support to the Houthis “Renewed international commitments to end the war in Yemen means putting an end to the smuggling of Iranian weaponry into Yemen..”— Saudi Embassy (@SaudiEmbassyUSA) March 9, 2021
Critics of US President Joe Biden’s decision have said that the Houthis feel emboldened, which has led to an uptick of its offensive on Marib, one of the last government strongholds in the north.
Saudi Arabia has repeatedly voiced its willingness to end the war in Yemen through a political solution.
Washington has also lauded Riyadh’s productive stance in expressing an interest in ending the years long war.
Nevertheless, the Houthis continue their daily targeting of Saudi Arabia using bomb-laden drones and ballistic missiles.
“The Kingdom is committed to ending the war in Yemen through a political resolution, but on the other side of this conflict is a group driven by the extremist ideology of the Iranian regime,” the Saudi ambassador said.
She added: “The Houthis continue to show callous disregard for the suffering of our Yemeni brothers and sisters. Quite simply, by their actions, they show they are not interested in the type of serious dialogue it will take to end the nightmare in Yemen.”
Princess Reema reiterated Saudi Arabia’s commitment to working with Biden’s recently appointed special envoy for Yemen and the UN’s special envoy, Martin Griffiths.
US Special Envoy Timothy Lenderking is in the region for the second time since being appointed, shortly after Biden took office. He has met with Houthi officials directly, and through various diplomatic channels, sources familiar with his meetings have said.
But the recent Houthi attacks on Saudi Aramco facilities are becoming a direct threat to the stability of global energy supplies, Princess Reema said. The attacks are also “affecting the entire global economy and endangering the lives of Saudi workers in Aramco and thousands more from 80 different nationalities, including Americans,” she noted.
As for Iran and its support for the Houthis, the Saudi ambassador called on the international community to help end the smuggling of Iranian weapons into Yemen.