Yemen rebels say they foiled naval attack


DUBAI: Yemen’s Shiite rebels say they have foiled a naval attack by government forces backed by a Saudi-led coalition off the Red Sea port of Hodeida.
Col. Aziz Rashed, the spokesman for an army unit allied with the Houthi rebels, told a news conference Thursday in the capital, Sanaa, that the rebels have countered “hostile naval warships” off the coasty of al-Olifika, to the south.
He claimed that rebel forces hit a UAE warship near Hodeida with two missiles. He says it will be “impossible” for the coalition to capture Hodeida. The Saudi-led coalition launched an offensive Wednesday aimed at driving Iran-allied Houthi rebels from the port, which is the main entry point for food and aid to the war-torn country.
Iran has condemned the Saudi-led coalition’s assault on the Yemeni port city of Hodeida, which is controlled by rebels aligned with Tehran.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Ghasemi said Thursday that “such crimes will shatter the hopes for political endeavors and will add to the complexity of the situation.”
Ghasemi also expressed concern about the worsening humanitarian situation in the impoverished country, which has been driven to the brink of famine by more than three years of war.