The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is blaming Iran for a ballistic missile launch at its capital over the weekend, claiming it could be an “act of war.”
Houthi rebels in Yemen actually fired the missile, but they are proxies of Iran and Tehran has been supporting them militarily.
The Saudi-led coalition battling the rebels in Yemen said it reserved the “right to respond” to the missile attack on Riyadh at the weekend, calling it a “blatant military aggression by the Iranian regime which may amount to an act of war.”
Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir also warned Tehran.
“Iranian interventions in the region are detrimental to the security of neighboring countries and affect international peace and security. We will not allow any infringement on our national security,” Jubeir tweeted.
The Saudi threat comes amid a historic purge of officials including royals and current and former government ministers charged with corruption, as 32-year-old Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman consolidates his hold on power.
Analyst comment: The Saudis and Iran have been at odds for years, with tensions increasing in recent years especially as Tehran seeks to dominate the Middle East. We expect more of these wars of words — and perhaps even actual war — in the future as rival Saudi and Iranian interests converge.
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