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Thu May 27, 2021, 01:55 PM

Saudi-led coalition says it's behind military buildup on Red Sea island

DUBAI (Reuters) - The Saudi-led military coalition engaged in Yemen said on Wednesday it had established a presence on a strategic island at the entrance to the Red Sea to counter perceived threats to maritime trade from the Iran-aligned Houthi movement.

The statement was issued in response to an Associated Press report citing Yemeni officials saying the United Arab Emirates was behind an air base that has emerged on Perim Island, also known as Mayun, in the vital Bab al-Mandab strait.

The AP said it obtained satellite images showing a 1.85 km runway on Perim along with three hangars.

"All equipment currently present on Mayun Island is under control of the Coalition Command, and is situated there to... counter the Houthi militia, secure maritime navigation and support West Coast forces," said a statement on Saudi state news agency SPA, citing an unnamed official in the coalition.


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