by Staff Writers
United Nations, United States (AFP) Nov 7, 2017
The United States on Tuesday accused Iran of supplying a missile to Yemeni rebels that was fired into Saudi Arabia in July and called for an international response.
US Ambassador Nikki Haley said Riyadh had released information showing that the missile was an Iranian Qiam and that this weapon was not present in Yemen before the conflict.
"By providing these types of weapons to the Huthi militias in Yemen, Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps is violating two UN resolutions simultaneously," Haley said in a statement.
"We encourage the United Nations and international partners to take necessary action to hold the Iranian regime accountable for these violations."
There was no US request however for the council to hold a meeting on the missile attacks.
The accusations came amid heightened tensions after the Huthis fired a missile that was intercepted near Riyadh.
Haley said that missile may also be of Iranian origin.
The United States "will not turn a blind eye to these serious violations of international law by the Iranian regime," she said.
Haley, a strong voice on foreign policy in the US administration, has repeatedly called on the UN Security Council to take a tougher stance toward Iran.
Haley has accused Iran of illegal arms deals and military support in Yemen, Lebanon and Syria.
A Saudi-led Arab military coalition intervened in Yemen in 2015 to support President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi after the Huthis forced him into exile.
The coalition said it had shot down on July 27 a missile fired by the Huthis close to Mecca, a month before the annual Hajj pilgrimage.
Iran says Saudi claims on Yemen 'contrary to reality'
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, speaking by phone with his British counterpart Boris Johnson, said "the allegations by Saudi officials were contrary to reality and dangerous", a foreign ministry spokesman said.
Zarif also slammed "provocative actions by the Saudi government in the region", spokesman Bahram Ghassemi added.
Huthi rebels in Yemen, the targets of a two-year Saudi-led bombing campaign, fired a missile Saturday that was intercepted and destroyed near Riyadh international airport.
The attack sparked a bitter war of words between Sunni-ruled Saudi Arabia and its top regional rival, predominantly Shiite Iran.
"The involvement of Iran in supplying missiles to the Huthis is a direct military aggression by the Iranian regime," the official Saudi Press Agency quoted Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman as saying.
This "could be considered an act of war," he said.
Riyadh has accused Tehran of supplying the Shiite rebel group with arms, but a senior Iranian official on Monday rejected such accusations.
"It is very childish to say that Iran has sent missiles to Yemen," the official said, requesting anonymity.
He said ships in the surrounding waters were on high alert and ready to intercept such deliveries.
"The Saudis and their supporters know that this is a faked story," he said.
Since Saturday's missile attack, the Saudi-led coalition has tightened its blockade of rebel-held areas of Yemen, blocking even United Nations-supervised relief supplies despite urgent appeals from the world body.
"The best thing to do for Saudis is not try to fish in troubled waters, just to be honest and say that ok, it's time to end the conflict" in Yemen, the Iranian official said.
He added that Tehran would support "any genuine dialogue" between Yemenis.
The Saudi-led Arab military coalition intervened in Yemen in 2015 to support President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi after the Huthis forced him into exile.
More than 8,650 people have been killed in Yemen since the start of the intervention.
Repeated attempts to bring about a negotiated settlement to the conflict have failed, including a series of UN-backed peace talks.
Washington (UPI) Nov 6, 2017
Raytheon Co., has been awarded $260 million for the procurement of 196 Tomahawk Block IV cruise missiles in support of U.S. Navy operations and England. Pentagon officials announced the contract award late Friday, which modifies a December 2016 contract worth $303 million, which was for the procurement of 214 Tomahawk cruise missiles. The Tomahawk Block IV all-up-round vertical l ... read more
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