Saudi Air Force copter crash kills 12

Saudi Air Force copter crash kills 12

Saudi Air Force copter crash kills 12

Twelve Saudi soldiers, including four officers, were killed on Tuesday when their helicopter went down in Yemen, the Arab coalition fighting Yemeni rebels said in a statement.

The Black Hawk "fell during operations" in Marib, said a statement from the coalition.

RIYADH: The Saudi-led military coalition fighting in Yemen said one of its helicopters crashed in eastern Yemen on Tuesday, killing 12 Saudi officers in one of the deadliest incidents for the Kingdom's troops since the war began more than two years ago.

But the Yemeni defense ministry's 26 September news website quoted an officer in Yemen's military high command as saying the helicopter was shot down 5 km (3 miles) from its landing spot because of "a technical fault that caused a misreading of the air defense system, which resulted in the destruction of the plane before it landed".

Yemen has been suffering from a brutal conflict between the government and the Houthi movement backed by army units loyal to former President Ali Abdullah Saleh since 2014.

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Attacks are common in northern Sinai, where an insurgency by Islamist militants has raged for years, but rare in south Sinai. The incident took place at the Greek Orthodox Monastery of St.Catherine, a site of pilgrimage for christianity.

Houthi rebels seized the capital Sana'a in September 2014 and continued to advance through the country, before the Yemeni army backed by the Saudi-led air campaign managed to regain the southern city of Aden, which now hosts the government and the presidential office.

Under Mr Obama tactical assistance to the coalition was greatly reduced because of concerns over civilian casualties and other disagreements. The last round of talks broke down after the Hadi government turned down a compromise plan put forward by then U.S. secretary of state John Kerry.

He added that "It has gone on for a long time".

He also echoed past Saudi accusations that Houthis have been receiving arms from Iran, saying that the Iranians have supplied Houthis with missiles they use to fire on Saudi Arabia.

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