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05 December 2023

Iran never stopped arming Houthis: Kerry


Iran has never stopped sending arms to the Houthis in Yemen since they launched their coup nearly 12 years ago and such support was coupled with training and media campaigns along with direct involvement of Iranian experts in fighting near the Saudi border, according to the Dubai-based Arabic language daily ‘Al Bayan’.

US Secretary of State John Kerry revealed such continuous support in recent statements, when he said in an address in Washington that US naval forces in the Gulf have recently stopped an arms shipment sent by Iran to Yemen, adding: “This is evidence that Iran is continuing arming some groups in  the region.”

Yemeni legitimate authorities have also disclosed that the Houthis have smuggled a large quantity of Iranian weapons through Red Sea islands and that this has prompted the Saudi-dominated coalition to take control of those islands.

“The coalition and national army also foiled many attempts by the Houthis to smuggle weapons through Shabwa via small boats.

“Before they were discovered, some of the weapons were transported by the Houthis to Baidah province through the desert,” ‘Al Bayan’ said in a report from Sanaa.

A few days ago, Yemeni military sources said a number of Houthi leaders, including Iranian experts, were killed by coalition jets in the Northern Saada governorate while this week, an Iranian revolutionary guard was killed by a Houthi militia man at a training camp in Saada.

Two other Iranian experts were killed by coalition jets which targeted their car in Aljouf near the Saudi border on Thursday.

In Saudi Arabia, authorities have released recordings by a Lebanese Hezbollah leader who was training Houthis to attack the Kingdom.

“This shows that Hezbollah is directly involved in Yemen and confirms statements by President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi that the September 2014 coup was carried out with Iranian assistance and sponsorship so Yemen will be ruled by the Houthis and forces loyal to deposed President Ali Abdullah Saleh.”

The paper said plan, revealed by Hadi, was that the Houthis’ top leader Abdul Malik Al Houthi will be the spiritual leader of Yemen as is the case in Iran while Saleh’s son Ahmed Ali Saleh will be the political leader.

“All these plans sponsored by Iran were sabotaged by the ‘Storm of Decisiveness’.”

The paper quoted sources as saying that Iran has recently stepped up arms smuggling to the Houthis through Hijja province close to Saada.

It said a weapons shipment was seized aboard two vessels, Jihan 1 and Jihan 2, and that the crew men confessed that they were hired and were taken from Yemen to Damascus then to Iran.

“Yemeni government sources affirm that Iran has sent many experts to Yemen to support the Houthis from the early days of the coup.

“Their mission was to train the Houthi fighters, set up ammunition, weapons and explosives factories and organise arms smuggling.

“Despite the naval blockade imposed by the UN Security Council to prevent weapons smuggling to the Houthis, Iran’s attempts to send arms to those militias have never stopped,” the paper said.