Bombs disguised as rocks in Yemen reportedly show Iran aid

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The Saudi-led coalition on Monday threatened retaliation against arch-foe Iran, accusing it of being behind a barrage of Yemeni rebel missile attacks on the kingdom.

The Cabinet, which was chaired by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz at Al-Yamamah palace in Riyadh on Tuesday, praised the success of the Saudi Royal Air Defense Forces in intercepting ballistic missiles fired by Houthi insurgents on Saudi Arabia.

The Saudi letter to the UN coincided with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's meeting with UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres in NY.

Although, this is of course worrying, the Iranian-Houthi forces are too weak to pose any threat to Saudi Arabia and it fact galvanises the opposition to Iran.

"Iran is the appendicitis in the body of the world and should fix itself or else the world will fix the Iranian situation", spokesman Colonel Turki al-Malki said.

Iran denies it is backing the Houthis.

Analysts said that in the short term, the Saudi leadership is unlikely to respond aggressively amid increased global scrutiny of the three-year-old Yemen conflict, which has given rise to the world's most urgent humanitarian crisis.

"We question why Iran is spending significant revenue in a country with which it has no real historical ties or interests, rather than using its influence to end the conflict for the good of the Yemeni people".

The Yemen conflict pits a coalition of Western-friendly states led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates against the Houthis, who are sympathetic to Iran but deny being a pawn of its Shi'ite Muslim theocracy.

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"It is not the first time Saudi Arabia enters into correspondence against Iran in order to cover up its defeats in Yemen, and the worldwide community is well aware of this fact", Khoshrou was quoted as saying by Iran's state TV.

Saudi Arabia and its allies launched the war on Yemen in March 2015.

The independent watchdog said it examined a fiberglass-encased bomb, packed with explosives, and found a type of Chinese-manufactured wire covering used in other Iranian materiel.

Consultancy Eurasia Group said that a successful Houthi strike on a prized Saudi target would probably prompt a firm military response from Riyadh to try to deter Iran.

"They may make similar moves in order to be seen to be doing something, but it won't really change the dynamics of the conflict", said Jane Kinninmont, Middle East expert at Chatham House in London.

The Saudis have maintained the narrative that Iran is behind the Yemen War throughout, but have struggled to prove the weapons smuggling they allege.

Rashed wrote: "The situation would have been frightening; much worse and more serious for both Yemen and Saudi Arabia, and would have caused a wider war than the one we have witnessed in the past 36 months".

The top general said the Yemeni nation has come under military aggression, and hence, it is resisting the aggressors.

The policy statements from Washington, the brand new regiment of sanctions and the appointment of incoming national security adviser, John Bolton - a foreign policy radical, who unequivocally supports wars with Iran and North Korea, indicates the Trump administration's readiness to take on Tehran.

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