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Two Indians killed in Houthi drone strike in UAE; Houthis warn of more attacks

Two Indians killed in Houthi drone strike in UAE; Houthis warn of more attacks

Abu Dhabi, Jan 17 (UNI) Two Indians and a Pakistani national were killed when three petroleum tankers exploded in Abu Dhabi in a Houthi drone attack on Monday. This comes even as seven Indian crew members continue to be in the captivity of Houthi rebels who seized a UAE-flagged ship on January 2 in the Red Sea.
Monday’s drone attack by the Iran-backed Houthis marks an escalation in the fighting between the rebels and the Saudi-led coalition, of which the UAE is a part.
The Houthis have warned of more such attacks on the UAE.
The Indian Embassy in Abu Dhabi confirmed the death of two Indian nationals in the tanker explosion, and said it is in close touch with UAE authorities for further details.
The Indian Embassy in a tweet said: “UAE authorities have informed that the explosion at Mussafah, near ADNOC’s storage tanks, has led to 3 casualties, which includes 2 Indian nationals.
“The Mission @IndembAbuDhabi is in close touch with concerned UAE authorities for further details.”
Earlier, UAE's state-run WAM news agency quoted Abu Dhabi Police as saying that three people were killed -- two Indians and one Pakistani -- and six others were injured in the explosion that occurred after a fire broke out on Monday morning in the Musaffah ICAD 3 area near the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc).
The explosions happened in ICAD 3, Mussaffah, near Mohamed bin Zayed City.
The UAE police said that preliminary investigations suggested that "small flying objects", possibly related to drones, fell into the areas and started the fires.
A smaller fire was also reported in the new construction area of Abu Dhabi International Airport.
The fire has been put out, it said.
On January 3, Yemen's Houthi rebels seized a UAE-flagged vessel in the Red Sea, amid escalation in the fighting between the rebels and Saudi-backed coalition.
The seized UAE flagged ship Rawabi has 11 crew onboard of which 7 are Indian nationals.
India has said it is in touch with the company operating the ship and has urged the Houthis to release the Indian sailors.
Houthi military spokesperson Brigadier General Yahya Saree on Monday confirmed the drone attack in UAE.
“In a strategic operation, we targeted deep inside the UAE territory," said Yemen’s Armed Forces Spokesman Brigadier General Yahya Saree, after a blast was reported in Abu Dhabi, Iran’s Mehr news agency quoted him as saying.
The Yemeni army and ‘popular committees’ used as many as 20 UAVs and 10 ballistic missiles to strike targets deep in the UAE, Lebanese Al-Mayadeen quoted special sources as saying of Monday’s attack.
Mohamed al-Bukhaiti, the official spokesperson of the Houthi rebels, said that if the UAE does not stop its aggression on Yemen, it will receive “more painful strikes”.
Yahya Saree said Monday that the Yemeni military struck areas deep inside the United Arab Emirates after a warning a few days ago by Al-Bukhaiti.
UNI/RN

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