SANA’A (Dispatches) – The Yemeni army’s air defenses on Sunday shot down a U.S. RQ20 spy drone over Jizan region, south of Saudi Arabia, the country’s Armed Forces spokesman Brigadier General Yahya Saree said.
"The air defenses managed to shoot down an U.S. RQ20 drone in the airspace of Haradh district off Jizan by an appropriate weapon,” A spokesman for the Yemeni Armed Forces, Gen. Saree said in a statement, according to al-Masirah.
The AeroVironment RQ-20 Puma is a small, battery powered, American hand-launched unmanned aircraft system produced by AeroVironment based in California. Its primary mission is surveillance and intelligence gathering using an electro-optical and infrared camera.
Yemeni forces have managed to down numerous U.S.-made drones in recent years, notably destroying a U.S.-operated advanced MQ-9 Reaper attack drone in August 2019.
Later in the day, Saudi-led military aircraft launched four airstrikes against several areas in Ajasher desert in Yemen’s northern province of Jawf.
The warplanes also pounded Emarat area in the Kitaf wa al-Boqe’e district of the northwestern mountainous province of Sa’ada on three occasions.
No casualties have been reported.
Elsewhere, dozens of militiamen loyal to Yemen’s former President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi and patronized by Riyadh were killed or injured in a counteroffensive by Yemeni allies in Najran, southwestern Saudi Arabia.
A Yemeni military source, speaking on condition of anonymity, said mercenaries fighting for Saudi Arabia mounted a multi-pronged attack in Sawh area of the region but were confronted by Yemeni troops in hours-long fierce battles.
In March 2015, Saudi Arabia embarked on a bloody campaign against Yemen with the declared aim of putting Hadi back into the seat of power, and eliminate the Houthi Ansarullah movement.
Riyadh has not been alone in the campaign. It has been flanked by regional allies and enjoys arms supplies from its Western backers.
Over 100,000 people have been killed. That is according to some semi-official figures.
The Saudi regime has failed to fulfill the objective of its deadly campaign.
The war has also destroyed and shut down Yemen’s infrastructure. The Yemeni population has been subjected to large-scale hunger and diseases aggravated by the naval blockade imposed on the country by the coalition of aggressors.