Saudi-led alliance helicopter in Yemen 'forced landing'

Saudi coalition asks UN to take over Yemen airport security

Saudi coalition asks UN to take over Yemen airport security

The soldiers - line officer Ahmed Khalifa Al Balooshi, Lieutenant Captain Jassem Saleh Al Zaabi, Warrant Officer Mohammed Saeed Al Hassani, and Warrant Officer Samir Mohammed Murad Abu Bakr - were killed in a helicopter crash during "a regular mission" in Shabwa province in Yemen while taking part in a Saudi-led campaign targeting Shiite rebels there.

Maliki did not respond to calls seeking further details late Friday.

The general command of the UAE's armed forces confirmed that four of its soldiers were killed after their helicopter was hit by a technical fault.

Another five injured soldiers were taken to hospital in Mukalla in the neighbouring province of Hadramawt, they said.

Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, seen by the United States as the global terror network's most unsafe branch, has exploited years of conflict between the government and Iran-backed Huthi rebels to expand its presence in Yemen, particularly in southern provinces.

The UAE is a key component of the Saudi-led coalition which intervened in Yemen in 2015, when President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi fled into exile as the rebels threatened to overrun his last stronghold.

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