TEHRAN (defapress) – A new batch of US Marines has arrived on Yemen's strategic Socotra Island, installing Patriot defense systems, according to local reports.
News ID: 80462
Publish Date: 10March 2020 - 11:37
Sanaa Post reported that the American soldiers were received by the occupying UAE forces at their headquarters on the island.
There is speculation that the US intends to establish its own military base amid reports that America had sent military experts to equip observation points to deploy radars and air defense points on the strategically located island overlooking the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean, according to Middle East Monitor.
US forces had previously arrived on Socotra in December of last year and started installing a Patriot missile system in order to protect the Saudi and Emirati forces on the island at the time.
Socotra, home to some 60,000 people, sits at the entrance to the Gulf of Aden. Shipping traffic passes by the island on the way to the Bab al-Mandab Strait and Suez Canal.
The island has a unique ecosystem and has been listed by UNESCO as a world natural heritage site.
Residents of Socotra Island have repeatedly staged protests to vent their outrage at the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for deploying military forces there.
Saudi Arabia and the UAE are key members of a coalition that has been waging a deadly war on Yemen since March 2015 in support of the former Yemeni president, Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, and against the Houthi Ansarullah movement.
The Saudi-led military campaign has killed and injured over 600,000 civilians, according to the Yemeni Ministry of Human Rights.
Several Western countries, the US and the UK in particular, are accused of being complicit in the aggression as they supply the Riyadh regime with advanced weapons and military equipment.