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Abu Dhabi is ‘attacked by drones’ launched by Iran-backed Houthi rebels

Abu Dhabi is ‘attacked by drones’ launched by Iran-backed Houthi rebels as fire breaks out at international airport and oil tankers explode at petrol storage facility

  • Police said a fire broke out an extension of Abu Dhabi’s main international airport
  • Three fuel tanker trucks had exploded near storage facilities of oil company
  • Police said preliminary investigations indicated the detection of small flying objects, possibly belonging to drones


Abu Dhabi has been reportedly attacked by drones that were launched by Iran-backed Houthi rebels after a fire broke out at the emirate’s main airport and three oil tankers exploded at a petrol storage facility.

Police in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) said a fire broke out at an extension of Abu Dhabi’s main international airport, with officials describing the blaze as ‘minor’. 

Abu Dhabi police added that three fuel tanker trucks had exploded in the industrial Musaffah area near the storage facilities of ADNOC, Abu Dhabi’s state-owned oil company. 

Police said preliminary investigations indicated the detection of small flying objects, possibly belonging to drones, that fell in the two areas and may have caused the explosion and fire. 

Police in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) said a fire broke out at an extension of Abu Dhabi’s main international airport (file image), with officials describing the blaze as ‘minor’

There was no ‘significant damage’ from the incidents and a full investigation has been launched, the statement added. 

Yemen’s Houthi rebels, backed by Iran, claimed on Monday they had launched the attack on the UAE. 

Military spokesman Yahia Sarei of Yemen’s Houthi movement, which is battling a military coalition led by Saudi Arabia and including the UAE, said the group launched a military operation ‘deep in the UAE’ and would announce details in coming hours.

Houthi fighters ride vehicles carrying the coffins of slain comrades who were killed in recent fighting against Saudi-backed government forces in Yemen on January 10

Houthi fighters ride vehicles carrying the coffins of slain comrades who were killed in recent fighting against Saudi-backed government forces in Yemen on January 10

Pro-coalition forces backed by the UAE have recently joined fighting against the Houthis in Yemen’s energy-producing regions of Shabwa and Marib.

The UAE had largely scaled down its military presence in Yemen in 2019 but continues to hold sway through Yemeni forces it armed and trained.

The Houthis have repeatedly launched cross-border missile and drone attacks on Saudi Arabia and have in the past threatened to attack the UAE. 

The UAE has been at war in Yemen since early 2015.    

The ongoing conflict in Yemen, now in its seventh year, pushed the small nation into a humanitarian crisis that has cost tens of thousands of lives and forced millions of people onto the brink of starvation. 

The coalition led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) intervened in 2015 after Iran-backed Shi’ite Muslim Houthi forces ousted the internationally recognized government from the capital city of Sana’a. 

Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, who was in power for more than two decades, saw his dictatorial regime toppled in 2012 during the Arab Spring protests. 

He then sided with the Houthi rebels who ousted the country’s democratic government before being killed by the same insurgents who accused him of being a traitor.  

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