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RIYADH

Saudi air defense on Saturday shot down a ballistic missile fired by Houthi rebels from neighboring Yemen, according to the official SPA news agency.

The missile was fired toward the southern Najran province, but was intercepted and destroyed by the Saudi air defenses, SPA quoted Murki al-Maliki, a spokesman for the Saudi-led coalition fighting Houthis, as saying.

A foreign resident was slightly injured by the missile shrapnel, he said, without unveiling his nationality.

The pro-Houthi al-Masira television confirmed that a missile had been fired toward Najran.

“This hostile action proves the involvement of the Iranian regime in supporting the Houthi armed militia with qualitative capabilities in a clear and explicit defiance and violation of UN resolutions… in order to threaten the Saudi security and the regional and international security,” al-Maliki said.

Houthi rebels have fired a barrage of missiles toward Saudi territory over the past week, including the capital Riyadh.

Impoverished Yemen has been wracked by conflict since 2014, when the Houthis overran much of the country, including capital Sanaa.

The conflict escalated in 2015 when Saudi Arabia and its Sunni-Arab allies launched a wide-ranging military campaign aimed at rolling back Houthi gains in Yemen.

Riyadh has repeatedly accused the Houthis of acting as a proxy force for Shia Iran, Saudi Arabia’s arch-foe in the region.

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