The Houthis (Ansar Allah) showcased new missiles and drones during a military parade in the Yemeni capital, Sanaa, on September 21.
The parade was held to commemorate the ninth anniversary of the Houthis takeover in Yemen. It was attended by Chairman of the Houthi-led Supreme Political Council, Mahdi Al-Mashat, Minister of Defence, Major General Mohammed al-Atfi, and other senior officials and military commanders from the group and its allies.
Speaking at the parade, Maj. Gen al-Atfi said that “there will be no peace without ending the aggression, lifting the siege, and the departure of foreign forces from Yemen.”
During the parade, the Houthis unveiled four new cruise missiles, Quds-4, Quds-Z-0 Sayyad and Sejil. The Quds 4 is a land-attack missile, while the Quds-Z-0 has additional anti-ship capabilities. The Sayyad is an anti-ship missile with a range of 800 kilometers and 200 kg warhead. The Sejil is a lighter anti-ship missile with a range of 180 kilometers and a 100 kg warhead.
Several new precision-guided ballistic missiles were also unveiled during the parade, including the liquid-fueled Tufan and Aqil as well as the solid-fueled Tankil, Myoun and Badir-4. All the missiles are mainly meant for ground attack. However, the Tankil has additional anti-ship capabilities.
The Houthis also showcased four new anti-aircraft missiles, Mutee, Saqr-2, Barq-1 and 2. The specifications of the Mutee were not unveiled. However, the Houthi claim that the Saqr-2, which appears to be a copy of the alleged Iranian Type 358 missile, has a range of 150 kilometers and an altitude of ten kilometers.
Meanwhile, the Barq-1 and 2, which may be derivative from the Iranian Sayyad family of anti-aircraft missiles, have a range of 50 and 70 kilometers and top altitude of 15 and 20 kilometers, respectively.
In addition, the Houthis unveiled during the parade the Waeed-2 suicide drone, a copy of the Iranian Shahed-136, with a range of 2,000 kilometers and a high-explosive warhead.
Several other weapons, including combat boats, armored vehicles, radar systems and helicopters, were showcased during the parade that went on for more than two hours.
The Houthis took over much of Yemen after a successful uprising in 2014. The next year, Saudi Arabia, backed by several Arab countries and the United States, launched an invasion to overthrow the group. Over the next eight years, more than 377,000 people were killed in the war.
The Houthis’ large parade in Sanaa came amid reports of positive progress in the peace talks between the group and Saudi Arabia. The talks began last April following a Saudi decision to end the war in Yemen. Riyadh’s decision was directly motivated by a rapprochement with Tehran, the main ally of the Houthis.
By showing off its military capabilities and unveiling new weapons, the Houthis are likely attempting to improve their position in the peace talks.