Bahrain foreign minister says that missiles come from Iran in violation of an arms embargo
Manama: Following the firing of missiles from Yemen by the Iran-backed Houthi rebels on Saudi Arabia late on Sunday Gulf officials have expressed their dismay and outrage while social media users engaged in hard criticism of the dramatic events unfolding in the region.
In Manama, Shaikh Khalid Bin Ahmad Al Khalifa, the foreign minister, said the missiles fired by the Houthis were from Iran.
“The Al Houthi missiles are Iranian. Self-incrimination. Iran will know the fate awaiting it,” he posted on his Twitter account.
In a statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that Bahrain strongly condemned the firing of several ballistic missiles by the Iranian-backed coup militia in Yemen, targeting population centres in areas of Saudi Arabia, including Riyadh.
The statement “affirmed Bahrain’s unity with Saudi Arabia in its ongoing war against all forms of terrorism at all levels and its full support for the measures it takes to defend its territory, maintain its security and stability and protect its people.”
“As it commends the high efficiency and vigilance of the Royal Saudi Air Defence Force and its ability to destroy and deal with ballistic missiles, Bahrain stresses that these ongoing hostilities by the Iranian-backed coup Houthi militias reflect the determination to spread chaos and instability throughout the region and prolong the crisis in Yemen as well as obstruct efforts to settle it peacefully,” the statement said.
In Kuwait, the Emir, Shaikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah “strongly denounced the ballistic missile attacks on the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”
“This hostile act violates all international norms, values and principles,” the Emir said in a cable to Saudi King Salman Bin Abdul Aziz late on Sunday.
Kuwait’s solidarity with Saudi Arabia and support to all measures it takes to maintain its security were highlighted in the cable, Kuwait News Agency (Kuna) reported.
Shaikh Sabah “prayed to Almighty God to protect the brotherly Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and its people against all evils and wished Saudis lasting security, safety and prosperity under the wise leadership of King Salman.”
Crown Prince Shaikh Nawaf Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah also sent a cable to King Salman in which he “reiterated Kuwait’s strong condemnation of the ballistic missile attacks against the Saudi Kingdom.”
Prime Minister Shaikh Jaber Al Mubarak Al Hamad Al Sabah sent a similar cable to King Salman.
The Foreign Ministry issued a statement that denounced the missile attacks on Saudi Arabia.
“Kuwait followed with full dismay and condemnation the news about missile attacks on the sisterly Kingdom of Saudi Arabia which terrorized innocent people,” the ministry said, quoting an official source it did not name.
“The source reiterated Kuwait’s total denunciation of these attacks which showed the Houthi group’s rejection of peace and of the will of the international community to put an end to the conflict in Yemen as well as its aim to undermine all chances of peace,” the statement said.
“The source urged the international community, especially the UN Security Council, to take immediate action to stop such attacks. The source affirmed that such actions will not undermine the determination of the brothers in Saudi Arabia in maintaining the kingdom’s security and stability as well as the safety of its people. The source reiterated Kuwait’s solidarity with the Kingdom and support to all the measures it takes to maintain its security and stability.
On social media, several users expressed their anger with the Houthis and condemned Qatar-based Al Jazeera for helping them promote their “destructive ideology.”
“Abdul Malik Al Houthi [the leader of the Houthi rebels] promotes the Houthi lies and allegations via Al Jazeera which has turned into a platform for lies and fake news and into an ominous trumpet for terrorists across the world. There is no difference between terrorists and they gang together,” Ebrahim El Shetawi, an Egyptian user, posted.
Some users displayed their support of Saudi Arabia by posting pictures of the Saudi flag while others blamed Iran and Qatar for the attacks.
Other users pointed out how some tweets purporting to have been posted by Saudi nationals were in fact posted from Qatar. One such a tweet claimed it was from a Saudi woman who said that she was in Riyadh and that half of the city had been destroyed. However, the post location clearly showed it was posted from Rayyan in Qatar.
Some users opted to poke fun at an Al Jazeera anchorman who during a phone interview asked whether the missile was destroyed or was able to return to its launch pad.