Houthi fighters ride on the back of trucks as they take part in a parade in the Red Sea port city of Hodeidah, Yemen August 24, 2017. The placards read: "Allah is the greatest. Death to America, death to Israel, a curse on the Jews, victory to Islam.".
(photo credit: REUTERS)
A spokesperson for Yemeni rebels has accused Israel of taking part in the Saudi Arabia led-coalition against Yemen and warned that Israeli military bases in Africa are within range of Houthi missiles.
Col. Aziz Rashid, military spokesman for the Houthis was quoted by Al Masirah, a news outlet tied to the armed group, also warned that his forces would soon have missiles capable of reaching bases in Israel itself.
“In the event that the military situation develops, all possibilities will be considered,” he said.
While Israel is not recognized by Saudi Arabia, Riyadh and Jerusalem have shared interests in curbing the expanding role of their mutual enemy, Iran, across the region. Relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia are at their worst in years with both accusing the other of subverting regional security.
Israel for its part has continued to warn of the growing presence of Iranian forces
on its northern border.
Israel established diplomatic relations with Eritrea in early 1993 and assisted in the Eritrean war of independence.
A 2012 report by intelligence group Stratfor uncovered Israeli naval bases in Eritrea’s Dahlak Archipelago and Massawa along with a listening post on Amba Soira.
It was previously reported that the Israeli bases were used by submarines and ships taking part in the ongoing covert war against Iranian networks smuggling weapons to Hamas and Hezbollah through the Red Sea and then to Sudan and Egypt.
Saudi air strike destroys Yemen missile base
Iran, which arms the Houthis, was also reported by Stratfor to have a military installation in Assab, Eritrea.
Tehran is reported to be spending hundreds of millions of dollars supporting the Houthi rebels including having sent Hezbollah militants to the war-torn country
to train the rebels.
In early July, chief of the IDF Intelligence Directorate Maj.-Gen. Herzi Halevi confirmed reports of that Hezbollah operates and manages two underground weapons factories in Lebanon set up by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps in response to alleged Israeli strikes against weapons convoys in Syria.
There is also concerns that Iran has begun to build similar factories in Yemen and according to Iran’s semiofficial Tasnim News Agency the Houthi have various homegrown missiles, including Qaher-1 which has a range of 500 km. as well as the Borkan-1.
The Houthis have launched several ballistic missiles into Saudi Arabia, including one which targeted the Saudi capital Riyadh a day before US President Donald Trump visited the Kingdom in May.
Yemen has been gripped by violence since September 2014, when the Houthi rebels, stormed Sanaa and forced the internationally recognized government to flee south.
The Saudi-led coalition began bombing Houthi positions across Yemen in March 2015 in support of Yemeni President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi and has since been accused of bombing schools, markets, hospitals and other civilian targets, killing over 10,000 people and leaving tens of thousands more injured.
The war has created a humanitarian crisis in one of the poorest countries in the Middle East, forcing aid groups to cope simultaneously with a food crisis as well as the world’s worst cholera outbreak which the International Committee of the Red Cross expects to hit one million cases
by the end of the year.