Country Risk

Incremental improvements in Houthi militants' ballistic missile campaign increase risk to assets in central Saudi Arabia

26 July 2017

Key Points

  • Houthi militants have repeatedly attempted to hit targets in Saudi territory with long-range ballistic missiles; Saudi Arabia has confirmed that more than 34 ballistic missiles have been launched from Yemen into its territory since the conflict began in 2015.
  • Confirmed use of longer-range missiles not available in Yemen prior to the conflict supports Saudi-led coalition, US, and Israeli assertions regarding suspected Iranian military support for the Houthis.
  • Houthis’ proven capability to modify and increase the range of these missiles indicates growing risk to a broader range of commercial assets in central Saudi Arabia.


The Yemeni Houthi militant group claimed on 22 July that it had launched a Burkan-2 (Volcano) ballistic missile in an effort to target an oil refinery in the Saudi coastal town of Yanbu, Medina province.

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