Sana’a, Dec 2 (EFE) – Yemen’s Houthi Shia insurgents organized a parade in Sana’a on Saturday of thousands of fighters, who they said were recruits to be sent to Gaza to fight against Israel and for Palestinian Islamist group Hamas.
The recruits, dressed in traditional Yemeni clothes, long-sleeved jackets and a Palestinian keffiyeh, marched toward Sabeen Square in the south of the Yemeni capital carrying firearms as leaders of the Iran-backed Houthi movement watched from a podium.
“They wounded our hearts by killing children in Gaza,” Saleh Aqlan, 67, who volunteered to fight Israel despite his advanced age, told EFE.
“How can we sleep while these Muslims are being murdered in front of our eyes?,” Aqlan added to EFE during the parade.
The Houthi rebels, a powerful pro-Iranian Shiite movement, took up arms against Yemen’s internationally recognized government in 2014 and now control Sanaa and large areas of northern and western Yemen.
Following the start of the war between Israel and Hamas on Oct. 7, the rebels repeatedly announced the launch of cruise missiles and drones against Israel in support of Hamas.
Two weeks ago they said they would prevent the movement of Israeli-flagged or Israeli-owned ships in the Red Sea.
“We will sacrifice ourselves and our money for the cause of Allah to support our brothers in Gaza, Palestine and Lebanon,” another recruit, Amiruden Karar, 23, told Efe during the parade.
“They (Israel) are attacking children, women and hospitals; they have left nothing. And if the Arabs remain silent, we will support our Palestinian brothers and sacrifice our money and everything we own,” he added.
The Houthi rebels threatened on Thursday to attack again and “expand their operations” by land and sea against the “Israeli enemy” if it “resumes its aggression against Gaza” .
Its military spokesman, Yahya Sarea, also warned that the insurgents “will not hesitate to expand their military operations against the Israeli entity to include targets they may not expect, on land or at sea.”
Sarea also noted that the Shiite movement “continues to prevent the movement of Israeli-flagged or Israeli-owned ships in the Red Sea,” where several incidents such as attacks and hijackings of cargo ships have occurred in recent weeks.
On the 24th, Yemeni rebels seized the cargo ship Galaxy Leader, which was transporting vehicles and owned by a British company but operated by the Japanese shipping company Nippon Yusen (NYK Line). EFE