Yemen has recently resorted to drone technology to fight off its political opponents. On 14th May 2019 Houthi rebels from Yemen sent seven armed drones to attack oil pumping stations in Saudi Arabia. It is noteworthy that this is not the first time these rebels have used drones to attack their enemies. They have been attacking oil tankers off the coast of United Arab Emirates using drones.
Tension between Saudi and Yemen’s Houthi rebels
The hostility between Yemen and Saudi started in 2015 when Saudi Arabia sent forces to attack the Houthi rebels in Yemen. There was a bombing campaign, followed by a naval blockade and landing of ground forces. The rebels from Yemen resorted to fighting back the pro-Saudi powers. They claimed to defend Yemen from a Western-backed invasion.
Drones in the Battlefield
The Houthi rebels retaliated, and exploited drones to inflict sabotage to Saudi’s property. Several strikes have been implemented from the air, in hopes of tearing down the mighty Saudi economy.
The drones that attacked the oil pumping stations of the government-owned oil company Saudi Aramco on the fourteenth of May were said to be fully armed. They opened fire at two pumping stations which were very close to Riyadh city – one was 125 miles west of Riyadh and the other 250 miles west. The drones were coordinated extremely well. They caused a fire (which was contained very soon) and some minor damage. The pumping stations are very crucial in increasing the pressure in the pipelines. Owing to this, when they were hit, oil flow through the pipelines had to be shut down for a brief amount of time. Reports say that this caused a slight increase in oil prices.
It is indeed a terrifying fact that progress in technology is also helping terror activities around the globe. People are using drones to not only attack other nations physically, but also the global economy is taking a hit.