CAIRO (AP) — A Saudi military spokesman says that its troops have landed on the Yemeni island of Socotra, listed by UNESCO as a world natural heritage site and the focus of a dispute between Yemen and its ally the United Arab Emirates.

Turki al-Malki, spokesman for the Saudi-led coalition fighting Yemen's Shiite rebels, says Sunday that the Saudi troops are on a training and support mission for Yemeni forces.

He adds that the Saudis, Emiratis and Yemenis will conduct joint training exercises in coordination with the Yemeni government.

The UAE is a major pillar in the Saudi-led coalition. But their alleged deployment of its troops to the island earlier this month without prior consultation with Yemen's exiled government stoked the ire of Yemeni locals.