MIAMI – Today, a flyadeal (F3) Airbus A320 was struck by a missile and subsequently caught fire, severely damaging the aircraft. 

According to a report by Al Jazeera, Houthi rebels from Yemen are responsible for the attack on the airport and later claimed responsibility for the attack. 

The group used four drones with bombs attached to target the airport. As seen in photos taken at the airport, the F3 Airbus A320, (HZ-FAB) has a gaping hole in the fuselage. 

The aircraft involved in the incident is a 3.5 year old Airbus A320-214(WL) operated by the Saudi based low cost carrier. It was originally delivered to F3 in September of 2017 on lease from DAE Capital. 

It was damaged on the ground after completing the two hour Dammam to Abha route. It is still unclear whether the aircraft will be able to be repaired and returned to service. The damage, however, is extensive.

The attack comes as part of a war between Saudi-backed forces and the Yemeni Houthi movement. 

Conflicting Statements

Houthi military spokesman Yehia Sareai stated, “This targeting comes in response to the continued aerial bombardment and the brutal siege on our country,”

In contrast, Saudi state-run television programming stated, “A cowardly terrorist attack by the Houthi militia on Abha International Airport … A civilian plane within the airport grounds was exposed to a fire which was brought under control.”

As expected in these situations, the opposing sides make statements that support their agendas. This is a developing story. Please check back later for any updated information.

Featured Photo: Sg578018 via Wikimedia Commons