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Warning 'foreign forces', Yemen's Ansarullah parades missiles, drones

Yemen’s popular resistance Ansarullah movement has displayed ballistic missiles and armed drones during a massive military parade in the Yemeni capital, Sana’a.

Armored cars, missiles and thousands of uniformed fighters filed past government officials and dignitaries on Thursday in a show of strength, as a military jet buzzed overhead.

The head of Yemen’s Supreme Political Council, Mahdi al-Mashat, and other officials watched as dozens of heavy trucks passed carrying cruise missiles and long-range armed drones.

Thousands of soldiers marched under the scorching sun while officers, wearing Yemeni flags as sashes, waved from the podium.

“We repeat our warnings to foreign forces… that we will not accept their presence on our lands, they have to leave or they will face the volcanoes of Yemeni anger,” Defense Minister Mohammed al-Atifi told the parade.

Wounded and amputated soldiers paraded in wheelchairs and on crutches, marching past huge portraits of Abdulmalik al-Houthi, the movement’s leader.

Armored vehicles and speedboats were displayed with signs that read: “Death to America, death to Israel!”

The movement in a statement voiced its readiness to fight battles in defense of the homeland.

“Our people believe that peace will be achieved only by imposing a deterrent military equation that forces the enemy to submit to all legitimate and just demands,” the statement read

“We will double our level of combat readiness during the coming weeks and months as part of a practical and responsible response to deal decisively and deterently with any developments.”

“We are ready to fight battles in defense of the homeland and the people if the aggression does not adhere to the requirements of an honorable peace,” it added.

The parade comes following Omani-mediated negotiations between a visiting Ansarullah delegation with Saudi officials in the kingdom’s capital of Riyadh.

The Ansarullah movement has voiced optimism about the quality of earlier talks in Saudi Arabia on the potential of putting an end to a hugely deadly war that Riyadh and its allies have been waging against Yemen since 2015.

The Yemeni delegation has now returned to the Yemeni capital of Sana’a for consultations with the leaders of Yemen’s Supreme Political Council.

According to al-Mashat, head of the council, the Yemeni delegation would revisit Riyadh for “completion” of consultations with the Saudi party.

Saudi Arabia and a number of its allies, including the United Arab Emirates, began the war in March 2015 to restore power in Yemen to the impoverished country’s Western- and Riyadh-allied government.

The former Yemeni government’s president, Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, resigned from the presidency in late 2014 and later fled to Riyadh amid a political conflict with Ansarullah. The movement has been running Yemen’s affairs in the absence of a functioning administration.

The war and a concomitant siege that the Saudi-led coalition has been imposing on Yemen has, meanwhile, caused the death of tens of thousands of Yemenis and turned the entire country into the site of, what the United Nations has described as the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.

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