DUBAI (Reuters) - Qatar said on Saturday that six of its soldiers were wounded on the Saudi border with Yemen while serving in a Saudi-led military coalition fighting against the Iran-aligned Houthi group.
Qatar’s defense ministry said in a statement carried by state news agency QNA that the six were injured “while conducting their duties within the Qatari contingent defending the southern borders of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia”.
It gave no further details on the incident.
Qatar-based Al Jazeera television reported in 2015 that Qatar had deployed 1,000 troops to Yemen. Other reports said the force was only being stationed at the Saudi border with Yemen.
Qatari media have reported that at least four soldiers have died while serving in the Saudi-led coalition, which intervened in Yemen in March 2015 at the behest of the government of President Abd-Rabu Mansour Hadi after the Houthis advanced on his headquarters in Aden, forcing him to flee.
The war has killed more than 10,000 people, half of them civilians, displaced more than 3 million people and ruined the economy.
Qatar and some of its fellow Gulf Cooperation Council members are currently embroiled in a dispute over purported remarks by the Qatari emir in which he is alleged to have criticized their policies and called for better ties with arch-foe Iran. Doha denies the emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, made the comments.
Qatar has said that the website of its state news agency, which carried the alleged remarks, was hacked by unidentified people who intended to divide the Western-allied GCC.
While Gulf states have made no public comment on the dispute, local Saudi and UAE media have heaped scorn on Qatar, accusing it of reneging on promises made during an earlier row to stop supporting Islamists, and of interfering in the affairs of its neighbours.
The remarks attributed to the emir came days after a visit by U.S. President Donald Trump to Saudi Arabia, a trip he used to rally Muslim and Arab support against terrorism and Iran.
Reporting by Sami Aboudi; Editing by Andrew Bolton