Saudis Say They Will Soon Scale Back Yemen War

by Jason Ditz

Saudi Arabia’s military spokesman today announced their intention to scale back military operations against Yemen at some point in the future. They suggested this would happen soon, but that airstrikes against Yemen would continue.

The announcement comes as UN officials took the Saudi military to task for a series of Tuesday airstrikes against a Yemeni marketplace, killing at least 119 civilians. This was the latest in a number of embarrassing incidents of major civilian deaths in Saudi attacks.

[RELATED: Saudi Airstrikes Hit Yemen Market, Killing at Least 41 Civilians]

The US praised the announcement, saying they’d been concerned about the loss of innocent life in Yemen, and welcome the Saudi statement for vowing to bring stability to the country they attacked last year. The US, of course, has participated in the Saudi war, both refueling Saudi warplanes during airstrikes and participating in the naval blockade.

The Saudi war’s stated goal was to reinstall Yemen’s President Hadi, who was appointed to a two-year term in office in early 2012, and resigned in January of 2015 after spurning Shi’ite calls for elections. The Saudis insist Hadi remains the legitimate ruler of Yemen, and expected to put him back in power quickly. A year into the war, however, they only control the city of Aden and some of the surrounding area.