12 officers Dead as Saudi military helicopter crashes in Yemen

A Saudi Blackhawk chopper crash in Yemen’s Marib on Tuesday killed 12 officers who were aboard.

The death toll was one of the largest in a single incident involving Saudi forces since a Arab coalition intervened in Yemen’s war in 2015 to try to roll back Houthi militias and restore President Abd-Rabu Mansour Hadi to power.

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The official Saudi news agency SPA quoted a statement from the Arab coalition as saying the Blackhawk came down in Marib province, east of the Houthi-controlled capital Sanaa.

“As a result, four officers and eight non-commissioned officers from the Saudi armed forces were martyred,” it said, adding the possible cause of the crash was under investigation.

Among the dead were the pilot, Captain Turki al-Houyrani, the co-pilot, First Lieutenant Rayan al-Shahrani, Lieutenant Colonel Abdulrahman al-Shahrani and Lieutenant Colonel Faisal al-Subai.

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The soldiers killed were First Class Sergeant Ali al-Sheikhi, Corporal Maeed al-Qahtani, Corporal Mahl al-Rashidi, Soldier Mohammed al-Souairi, Sergeant Ali al-Hellafi, Sergeant Moussa al-Shahri, Sergeant First Class Nayef Mouwad and First Class Soldier Mohammed Oqaili.

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Some Twitter users shared photos which the martyrs’ families posted on social media and voiced their pride in the victims’ “sacrifices for their homeland and its security and stability