Saudi airstrikes pound Yemen; Iran calls it ‘genocide’; shipping scaled back

People walk past a car damaged by an airstrike in Sanaa April 8, 2015. REUTERS/Khaled Abdullah

(Reuters) – Iran’s leader on Thursday condemned as genocide the military intervention by its main regional rival Saudi Arabia in Yemen, sharply escalating Tehran’s rhetoric against the two-week-old air strike campaign.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Saudi Arabia would not emerge victorious from the war in Yemen, where Iran-allied Houthi fighters who control the capital Sanaa have been trying to seize the southern city of Aden from local militias.

Iran has repeatedly urged a halt in the air strikes and called for dialogue in Yemen, but Khamenei’s comments are the most critical yet from Tehran about the offensive by Saudi Arabia and its Arab allies.

“This is a crime and genocide that can be prosecuted in international courts … Riyadh will not emerge victorious in its aggression,” Khamenei said, describing Saudi actions as an aggression on innocent Yemenis…

Related: Shipping lines pull back from Yemen as conflict escalates: (Reuters) – International shipping lines are being forced to scale back or suspend port calls to Yemen as the conflict gets worse, putting pressure on supplies of food as prices rise in local markets.

Yemen imports more than 90 percent of its food, including most of its wheat and all its rice, to feed a population of 25 million. Much of its needs had been serviced by foreign ships…

A man reacts at the site of an air strike in SanaaA man reacts at the site of an air strike in Sanaa April 8, 2015. A Saudi-led coalition air strike hit an office of Yemen’s Houthi rebels near the pro-Houthi television channel al-Maseera in central Sanaa on Wednesday, witnesses said. REUTERS/Khaled Abdullah

  • mobuyus

    iran can inhale big donkey prong and Saudi Arabia can continue to syphon dromedary genetic material.

    • no4

      You took the words right out of my mouth.

    • Clinton

      As Henry Kissenger said about the Iran-Iraq war, “it’s a pity they
      can’t both lose”.

  • Martin B

    Yemen is about 35% Shia, and thanks to money & weapons from the ayatollahs, the Shi’ite Houthis are taking over the whole country. Meanwhile, Soddy Barbaria is about 15% Shia, and they’re concentrated in the Eastern Province where all the oil is…Bring the popcorn, this is gonna be entertaining.

    • Frau Katze

      There was a Saudi policeman killed in those eastern areas a few days ago.

  • Ron MacDonald

    War is a bitch, especially if you’re on the losing side.

  • Hard Little Machine

    Nukes for everyone.

  • Xavier

    Saudi airstrikes pound Yemen; Iran calls it ‘genocide’

    If only it were!

  • Gettingby

    Any country that needs to import 90% of its food has no legitimacy as a country. Either develop ways to feed yourself or keep you pants up or knees together.

    • Frau Katze

      They’re also running out of water (using non-replenishing reservoirs to grow khat).

  • Let Iran and Saudi Arabia come to serious blows about this. This might work out.

    One hopes….