Saudi-US operation rescues American women from Sanaa

Saudi-US operation rescues American women from Sanaa

Saudi-US operation rescues American women from Sanaa. Saudi Arabia announced the rescue of two American women from Yemen’s capital, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Friday.
The women, who were being detained in Sanaa, a city held by the Iran-back Houthi militia, were freed in a joint Saudi-US operation, according to the Kingdom’s defense ministry.
The pair were first taken to Aden, on the southern coast, and then on to the Saudi capital Riyadh.
The women had been to Sanaa to visit their families. They had their passports confiscated and were also abused, according to Brig. Gen. Turki Al-Maliki, a spokesman for the Saudi defense ministry.
He said that the pair were transferred by the Royal Saudi Air Force and were received by US officials after undergoing health checks.
The women, aged 19 and 20, were now back in the US, Reuters reported citing an anonymous source with knowledge of the matter.

The Houthi movement, claiming it was fighting a corrupt system, ousted Yemen’s internationally recognized government in 2014 and seized Sanaa and now controls much of the deeply impoverished country.

A Saudi-led military coalition intervened on the government’s side in 2015. The conflict recently escalated with Houthi missile and drone attacks on the United Arab Emirates, which is part of the Saudi-led coalition, prompting retaliatory strikes by the coalition.

The war has created what the United Nations calls the world’s worst humanitarian disaster, with more than 20 million people in need of some form of assistance or protection.

A State Department spokesperson confirmed the rescue operation with Reuters, saying in a statement: “We assisted with the safe return of two US citizens from an area of Yemen currently under Houthi control.”
The spokesperson said the department was grateful for the assistance of “our Saudi and Yemeni partners in facilitating their safe departure. Due to privacy considerations, we have nothing further.”