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        Saudi-led coalition thwarts rebel boat attack in Red Sea


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        The Saudi-led coalition in Yemen said Monday that it had thwarted a rebel attack by an explosive-laden boat in the Red Sea.

        A coalition statement, cited by the Saudi state news agency, SPA, said the boat was destroyed off the coast of Al-Hudaydah city in western Yemen.

        The statement said the boat was prepared for carrying out an "imminent hostile assault" off Al-Hudaydah coast.

        "The Houthi militia continues to violate the Stockholm cease-fire agreement in Al-Hudaydah province," the coalition said.

        In December 2018, Yemeni government representatives and Houthi rebel leaders held UN-brokered talks in Stockholm that yielded a cease-fire deal and the swapping of prisoners in al-Hudaydah, in addition to other understandings on the humanitarian situation in the southwestern Taiz province.

        The Saudi-led coalition warned that the Houthi practices "pose a threat to the shipping lanes and world trade passing by the strategic Bab el-Mendeb strait and the Red Sea."

        There was no immediate comment from the Houthi group on the coalition's statement.

        Early on Monday, the Saudi-led coalition said it had destroyed a rebel drone fired towards Saudi territories.

        Houthi rebels, backed by Iran, regularly announce rocket, drone and boats attacks on Saudi targets, saying they are a reaction to the Saudi-led coalition's assault on Yemen.

        Yemen has been beset by violence and chaos since 2014, when Houthi rebels overran much of the country, including the capital, Sanaa. The crisis escalated in 2015 when a Saudi-led coalition launched a devastating air campaign aimed at rolling back Houthi territorial gains.

        According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, the conflict has claimed more than 233,000 lives.

        Middle East Monitor