Over the past 365 days, a coalition of mostly Arab countries led by Saudi Arabia, has been conducting air strikes in Yemen. Its main target have been Houthi rebels who took control of the capital Sanaa and other areas in 2014. The power grab forced the UN-backed president Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi to flee to Saudi Arabia. Since then, the fighting has destroyed much of the country and killed thousands of people. Now, armed groups including ISIL (also known as ISIS) have become a serious threat in Yemen.
Saudi Arabia and the UAE view the war as a means to limit Iranian influence in the Arabian Peninsula. While Iran directly denies arming the rebels, the United Nations and Western powers have documented arms transfers to the Houthis by Tehran of everything from Kalashnikov assault rifles to the ballistic missile technology used to periodically target cities as far away as the Saudi Arabian capital of Riyadh. The Houthis also have imprisoned opponents and indiscriminately laid land mines.
More than a dozen soldiers from Saudi Arabia have been killed in Yemen during operations along the border. This brings the total number of Saudi casualties since 2015 to over 1,000, according to state media. Meanwhile, the humanitarian crisis in Yemen is worsening as the war prevents much-needed aid from reaching many Yemenis. The UN estimates that 22 million Yemenis are in need of food aid and more than eight million are threatened by severe hunger.