Earlier this week, Yemen’s Houthi rebel group claimed it had launched a missile at the Barakah nuclear power plant in the western region of Abu Dhabi, in retaliation for the Saudi-led blockade imposed on Yemen. Abu Dhabi is part of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), a member of the coalition that has been targeting the Houthis. UAE officials immediately denied that the attack had taken place, and the Houthis have not provided any evidence to support their claim. However, regardless of the claim’s validity, and despite the lack of evidence, the incident is emblematic of the dangers of nuclear power in the Middle East. The UAE should take it very seriously. Even if this “attack” was merely a propaganda ploy, nuclear power facilities will always be potential targets for enemy states and non-state actors, including terrorist groups. In the Middle East, in particular, there is a history of attacks on nuclear sites during regional conflicts.
Bulletin of Atomic Scientists 8th Dec 2017 read more »