US to give logistical, intelligence support to Yemen offensive: White House

WASHINGTON (REUTERS) - US President Barack Obama has authorised logistical and intelligence help in support of a Saudi-led military operation in Yemen to beat back Houthi militia forces, the White House said late on Wednesday.

"While US forces are not taking direct military action in Yemen in support of this effort, we are establishing a Joint Planning Cell with Saudi Arabia to coordinate US military and intelligence support," a White House statement said.

The United States is also closely monitoring threats by the al-Qaeda branch in Yemen "and will continue to take action as necessary to disrupt continuing, imminent threats to the United States and our citizens," it added.