Country Risk

Growing risk to Saudi aviation assets and oil infrastructure as Yemen-based Houthi militants continue developing weaponised UAVs

31 July 2018


On 26 July, Yemen-based Houthi militants claimed to have hit Abu Dhabi airport with a new long-range weaponised unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), labelled the Sammad 2 which, according to the Houthi, has a range of more than 1400 km.

Although the UAE authorities denied reports that the airport was attacked, they acknowledged that an unspecified incident took place there, reportedly involving a supply vehicle.

The difficulty of a UAV penetrating Saudi airspace to reach Abu Dhabi undetected from Houthi controlled territory in northern Yemen, and the security and air defences at Abu Dhabi Airport, cause us to doubt the Houthi claim given the lack of evidence provided by the movement.

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