Saudi Arabia Intercepts Yemeni Ballistic Missile Over Riyadh

Missile Was Said to Target Airport

Saudi Arabia reported that over the weekend, they successfully intercepted a ballistic missile fired from northern Yemen over the capital city of Riyadh. The missile, labeled a Burqan 2H, was apparently aimed at the capital city’s airport.

The Yemeni Defense Ministry confirmed that they fired the missile, saying the attack was a success and “shook the Saudi capital.” Despite the strike, Saudi officials say the airport remains operating as normal.

This isn’t the first time Yemen has fired one of its ballistic missiles into Saudi Arabia, but this is by far the most ambitious of the bunch, and demonstrates a stunning amount of range for the Burqan 2H, which is described by officials as a modified Scud missile.

The longest range of the Soviet Scud missiles was 700 km, and while North Korea has through substantial investment managed to stretch their version to 1,000 km, it’s not clear how Yemen managed to develop the Burqan 2H, which must have a range in the 1,000 km to reach the Saudi capital from Shi’ite territory in Yemen.

Saudi Arabia warned the fire was a “dangerous escalation” of the war, though given the massive number of civilians they kill in routine attacks on Yemen in the first place, it’s not at all clear what else they can do.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of