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Washington will send a ship and fighter jets to the Emirates against the Houthis

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This deployment, the date of which has not been specified and which must help the United Arab Emirates deal with the current threatcomes after a phone call on Tuesday between US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and leader de facto of the country, Mohammed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, the United States Embassy in the Emirates said in a statement.

The Emirates are part of a military coalition led by Saudi Arabia, which since 2015 has come to the aid of the government of Yemen, at war against the Houthis supported by Iran.

In January, they were the target of three Houthi attacks.

On the 17th, a drone and missile attack on oil installations and Abu Dhabi airport killed three people. On the 24th, two ballistic missiles aimed at the Al-Dhafra air base, where the American forces are stationed, were intercepted by the latter.

The latest attack, which occurred on Monday, coincided with Israeli President Isaac Herzog’s first official visit to the Emirates since the two countries normalized relations in 2020.

The USS Cole guided-missile destroyer, currently in Bahrain, will partner with the Emirati Navy and make a port visit to Abu Dhabi, the statement said, adding that Washington will also deploy fifth-generation fighter jets.

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In addition, the United States will continue to provide intelligence for the prevention of attacks, according to the press release.

This aid is a clear signal that the United States supports the Emirates, a long-time strategic partneris added.

A new stage in the conflict

Shortly after taking office, in February 2021, US President Joe Biden withdrew US support for the coalition intervening in Yemen, reversing the policy of his predecessor Donald Trump.

However, Washington in November approved the sale of air-to-air missiles worth US$650 million to the Saudi kingdom.

A sale of US military equipment to the Emirates, approved in the last weeks of Donald Trump’s mandate and including 50 F-35 stealth fighters, for the amount of 23 billion dollars, remains under negotiation.

The multiplication of Houthi attacks against the Emirates, a wealthy Gulf country with a reputation as an oasis of peace in the Middle East, marks a new stage in the war in Yemen that began in 2014.

The Emirates said on Monday that they were totally ready to face any threat and to take all necessary measures to protect their territory. In January, the coalition carried out several air strikes against the Houthis in retaliation.

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The rebels assured that their operations against the Emirates proved their determination to carry out their threats, as long as the Emirates continue their aggression.

People with boxes and shopping bags

Yemenis receive humanitarian aid at a camp in Khokha district, Hodeidah province.

Photo: AFP / KHALED ZIAD

In 2019, the Emirates had redeployed their troops then present in Yemen while remaining an influential player in the conflict. Emirati forces have trained and armed Yemeni pro-government militias that have inflicted setbacks in recent weeks on the Houthis.

Abu Dhabi has repeatedly called on Washington to put the rebels back on the US list of terrorist organizations, from which they were removed last year to facilitate the work of humanitarians in the country.

In more than seven years of war in Yemen, all those involved in the conflict have been accused of war crimes by experts from theUnited Nations. Implicated for multiple burrsthe coalition recognized errorsbut accuses the rebels of using Yemeni civilians as human shields.

According to’United Nationsthe conflict in Yemen has claimed 377,000 lives and pushed the country’s 30 million people to the brink of starvation.

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