An AH-64 Apache attack helicopter, operated by the Royal Saudi Land Forces (RSLF), crashed in Yemen on Sept. 14 killing its pilot and co-pilot.
A spokesman with the Saudi-led coalition fighting the Houthi group in Yemen said that the Saudi Arabian Army helicopter went down at 8:20 a.m. Friday, due to technical issues, while conducting operations in Yemen’s al-Mahra province.
“A coalition helicopter belonging to a Saudi infantry brigade crashed due to a technical error,” the Saudi Press Agency quoted coalition spokesman Colonel Turki al-Malki as saying.
“Both the pilot and his assistant were martyred while conducting counter-terrorism and anti-smuggling operations in Yemen’s eastern Al-Mahra province,” he added.
The Western-backed coalition intervened in Yemen in 2015 to restore the internationally recognized government in exile, with a war against Iran-aligned Houthis. The war widely seen as a proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Iran.
The war against the rebels has devastated impoverished Yemen, turning the Arab nation into the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, with more than 20 million people in need of assistance.
Al-Mahra province, bordering Oman in east Yemen, has seen little fighting compared to the rest of the impoverished country. However, suspected militants from al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) have been active in the region, Reuters news agency reported.
Boeing AH-64 Apache is an twin-turboshaft attack helicopter manufactured by American defence major, Boeing. It is armed with a 30 mm (1.18 in) M230 chain gun and is equipped with four hardpoints mounted on stub-wing pylons for carrying armament and stores, typically a mixture of AGM-114 Hellfire missiles and Hydra 70 rocket pods.
The U.S. Army is the primary operator of the AH-64; it has also become the primary attack helicopter of multiple nations, including Greece, Japan, Israel, the Netherlands, Singapore, and the United Arab Emirates; as well as being produced under license in the United Kingdom as the AgustaWestland Apache.