CAIRO (Reuters) -The Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen destroyed an explosives-laden boat in the southern Red Sea before it could carry out an attack, Saudi state television reported on Thursday, citing a coalition statement.
The coalition said later that the Iran-aligned Houthi group was using a sports ground called Al Thawra north of the Yemeni capital of Sanaa to store weapons, and gave the group a deadline of six hours to remove them.
After the 2300 GMT deadline, the Saudi-led coalition attacked a camp to which weapons had been transferred in the capital Sanaa, it said in a statement early on Friday.
“The Houthis transferred qualitative weapons to Tashreefat camp within the coalition deadline. We destroyed nine weapons storage areas in the camp after weapons were transferred to it”, the coalition added in a statement.
Residents told Reuters on Friday that explosions rocked Sanaa as a result of strikes by the Saudi-led coalition, and added that the strikes hit a camp in Al-Zubayri Street in the center of Sanaa.
“If an international committee finds any drones or missiles at Al Thawra we will directly hand them to the United Nations, but if nothing is found, the coalition should permanently halt their attacks,” the head of the Houthi supreme revolutionary committee, Mohamed Ali al-Houthi, said on Twitter.
The Houthis have launched repeated cross-border drone and missile attacks on Saudi Arabia since the coalition intervened in Yemen in March 2015 after the movement ousted the Saudi-backed government from Sanaa.
The coalition has escalated attacks on the Yemeni capital over the past month, accusing the group of storing weapons in civilian buildings.
(Reporting by Alaa Swilam, Mahmoud Mourad, Moataz Mohamed and Mohamed Ghobari, writing by Alaa Swilam and Yomna Ehab,Editing by Mark Heinrich and Nick Macfie)