Overnight airstrikes conducted by US in Yemen were illegal: Russia

Russian President Vladimir Putin. [File Photo]

The overnight airstrikes conducted by the US in Yemen were illegal, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists on Friday, as reported by Russian TV network RT.

The attacks on dozens of targets in Yemen were conducted by the US and the UK with support from a handful of other nations, according to the US Central Command. Washington claimed the strikes were “defensive” in nature and were aimed at the de-escalation of tensions in the Middle East.

“We condemn them,” Peskov said when asked about the action during a media briefing. “The [UN Security Council] resolution gives no right for strikes, and consequently they are illegitimate under international law.”

The Russian presidential spokesman was referring to the January 10 UN document that called on the Houthi movement to cease attacks on merchant vessels. The Western strikes on several locations in Yemen reportedly targeted military assets of the group.

Earlier in the day Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova described the Russian position during a regular press conference. She said that a concern which Moscow has had, that US activities at the UN Security Council “were just a pretext for further escalation of the situation in the region,” have been confirmed by the attacks.

“A massive military escalation in the area of the Red Sea may nullify all positive trends which have emerged recently in the Yemen reconciliation process, and trigger destabilization of the entire Middle East,” she warned.

Russia was among the four members of the Security Council, alongside Algeria, China, and Mozambique, who abstained during Wednesday’s vote on Resolution 2722.

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