Agence France Presse
ADEN: Yemeni loyalists supported by a Arab-led coalition battled Sunday to oust Iran-backed rebels from a southern province where they have made gains in recent weeks, with at least 16 reported dead. Ground fighting and airstrikes by a Saudi-led coalition killed 12 rebels in Daleh province, military sources said. Four loyalists were also killed.
Daleh is one of five southern provinces which the coalition-backed loyalists retook from the rebels in a July offensive. But the Houthi rebels and their allies managed to recapture the province’s second-largest city, Damt, earlier this month.
In the oil-rich Marib province east of the capital Sanaa, coalition strikes on rebel military vehicles, meanwhile, killed eight militiamen, army sources there said. Loyalists control Marib city but have so far failed to secure the rest of the province, the source of much of Yemen’s oil output.
In third city Taiz, where a loyalist garrison has been under rebel siege for months, three civilians were killed and at least 20 wounded by rebel mortar fire late Saturday, medical and military sources said.
In rebel-held Sanaa, coalition aircraft carried out what a military source described as the heaviest strikes in weeks.
Coalition warplanes Saturday hit two small boats allegedly carrying weapons to Houthis in the Shabwa province, killing three smugglers, a military official said.