Yemeni Houthi forces down United States drone

Cheryl Sanders
October 3, 2017

An American MQ-9 Reaper drone was shot down Sunday in western Yemen, the Pentagon said, where a civil war between Saudi Arabia-backed government forces and Iran-backed Houthi rebels has raged for almost three years.

There were no reports of casualties from the crash, and Houthi rebels loaded what was left of the drone on to a pickup truck, according to Reuters.

"A military source said [Houthi] air defense shot down a U.S. MQ-9 surveillance drone in Jader area in the Sanaa province", SABA reported. A Reuters' photographer said they saw the drone fall from the sky around 11AM.

The slow moving General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper is a turboprop engine powered armed Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance platform widely operated by US Air Force on armed surveillance missions. "This incident is under investigation", a spokesperson told Military Times.

US officials have characterized the conflict in Yemen as a stalemate between the Saudi-led coalition and the Houthis.

The conducting two separate missions in Yemen.

Yemen's civil war began in March 2015 and has since led to a major humanitarian crisis.

One is a counterterrorism operation in partnership with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) against a regional al-Qaeda affiliate, known as al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).

The Houthi movement and its ally former president Ali Abdullah Saleh control much of northern Yemen, including Sanaa, and are battling a Saudi-led coalition that is trying to restore the internationally recognized government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi.

Five civilians were killed and eight wounded on Monday in an air raid on a rebel-held town in south Yemen, an official said, days after the United Nations agreed to investigate war crimes in the country.

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