Saudi Arabian Brig. Gen. Ahmad Al-Assiri, consultant in the defense minister’s office revealed that a large number of Houthis and pro-Ex president Saleh supporters are surrendering to the Popular Committees of president Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi. He also revealed that Iran and Hezbollah trained the Houthi rebels
He said those who are surrendering should be dealt with according to the international law and they shouldn’t be harmed.
Al-Assiri said Iran has not evacuated any of its citizens from Yemen because they are involved in “training and arming” the Houthis.
He added: “A lot of countries have requested evacuation for their citizens and successfully moved them out of Yemen. Those Iranians planning to remain in the country would face the same fate as the Houthis and their supporters.”
He added that the coalition forces who are fighting for the restoration of peace and the legitimate government in Yemen have reason to believe that the Houthis were trained by Hezbollah and Iran in order to dismantle the legitimate government of President Hadi.
“The asymmetric warfare of the Houthis and Iranian-trained fighter jets being used by the militia only prove that Hezbollah and Iran trained the Houthis.” Al-Assiri said .
Moreover, the history of their alliance in the past further confirms their vested goals of grabbing power, he said.
The coalition spokesman pointed out that the Houthis targeted hospitals and civilians, and attempted to cut water and power supplies, but coalition forces, the Popular Committees, tribesmen and resistance fighters prevented them from causing chaos.
Al-Assiri noted that the UN was briefed on these attempts that were aimed to cause chaos. Moreover, the Red Cross revealed ground reports exposing Houthi involvement in the targeting of civilians, he said.
The militants are resorting to these tactics against civilians to provoke coalition troops for any reactions that may cause collateral damage, he said.
However, undeterred by the facts, the allied forces continued their strikes based on precise intelligence to destroy Houthi firepower, artillery stocks and other arms and ammunition to force them to surrender, paving the way for the restoration of the legitimate government.
Al-Assiri said the coalition command is proactive to provide logistical and humanitarian support whereas the airstrikes are also continuing at the same pace to achieve the defined goals.
Coalition forces have targeted a number Houthi camps in different areas of the country to bring them to their knees, he added.
Despite their hostile attempts to disturb peace and continue their reign of terror, the coalition will restore peace in Yemen, he said.
“Operation Decisive Storm was started to protect the people of Yemen and their legitimate government, and we are sure we will protect them ,” said Al-Assiri.
In a reply to a questions about the use of forces for ground operations, he said: “It will be announced at an appropriate time, if and when required.”
So far as the land forces are concerned, Border Guard and field artillery on southern border are vigilant and committed to their assigned mission in preventing the terrorists from forming any base to head toward the border, he said.
US aware of Iran’s role
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said on Wednesday the United States is well aware of the support that Iran has been providing to Houthi forces who have driven Yemeni President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi out of the country.
Kerry said the United States would support countries in the Middle East who feel threatened by Iran.
“We’re not looking for confrontation, obviously, but we’re not going to step away from our alliances and our friendships and the need to stand with those who feel threatened as a consequence of the choices that Iran might be making,” Kerry said in an interview with PBS Newshour.
Suleimani in Yemen
BBC Arabic reported on March 27 that Brig. General Qassem Suleimani the head of the Qods Force, the foreign arm of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps who has been heading up the Iranian and Iraqi Shiite militia attack against the Islamic state in Tikrit was dispatched by the Islamic Republic of Iran to help organize the Shiite Houthi rebels following the Saudi-led airstrikes
Hezbollah chief attacks Saudi Arabia
Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah attacked Saudi Arabia and predicted Monday it will suffer a “major defeat” in the Yemeni conflict, as he stressed that “the war on Syria” has failed.
“Saudi Arabia will suffer a major defeat that will have an impact on its domestic situation and the entire region,” said Nasrallah .
He noted that the Saudi-led airstrikes have “miserably failed” to change the situation on the ground in Yemen, pointing out that the the Iranian backed Shiite Houthi rebels and their allies are still advancing.
“The Yemeni people support the Palestinian cause and they were interacting with what’s going on in Lebanon, Palestine and Syria.Today, there is a Saudi-American aggression against Yemen,” he added.