Hezbollah blames Saudi Arabia for spreading extremist ideology throughout the region

The leader of Lebanon's militant Hezbollah group has launched his harshest criticism yet of Saudi Arabia, blaming the kingdom for the spread of extremist ideology in the Muslim world and the killing of civilians in Yemen.

Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah told hundreds of supporters Friday at a Beirut rally in support of Yemen's Shiite rebels that Saudi-led airstrikes targeting them have not led to victory.

Since March 26, the Saudi-led coalition has been pounding the rebels known as Houthis and allied fighters loyal to Yemen's ousted President Ali Abdullah Saleh.

Nasrallah says that the kingdom will soon realize that "the only choice left" is a ground operation in Yemen — a "ground invasion will be costly and will end with a defeat."

Both the Houthis and Hezbollah are backed by Iran.