At least 160 members of the country’s Houthi rebel group have been killed in air strikes by the Saudi-led military coalition in Yemen’s eastern province of Marib. A statement from the Saudi coalition said on Saturday that the Houthis had been killed in air strikes in the last 24 hours.
The Saudi coalition said in a statement that 180 members of the Iranian-backed Houthi group had been killed in coalition airstrikes in the Abdia district of Marib. Thirty-two operations have been conducted in Abdia district targeting Huthis. Eleven Huthi military vehicles were also destroyed.
Yemen’s eastern province of Marib has been under Houthi rebel control since September 23. The Saudi coalition says the movement of civilians and humanitarian aid in the province has been hampered since the Houthi occupation.
The Saudi-led coalition has been conducting military operations in the Yemeni province for the past week. More than 600 Huthi members were killed in a Saudi airstrike in Marib last week.
The Saudi-led coalition has relied heavily on airstrikes to fight Shiite Houthis. However, the Saudi alliance did not provide details on how the death toll was calculated. The oil-rich Yemeni city of Marib is the latest base controlled by the country’s internationally recognized government.
Earlier, Saudi airstrikes in Abdia on Friday killed at least 160 Houthi members and destroyed 10 military vehicles. The Houthis once occupied Marib once in February, but their campaign was postponed for several months due to the deaths of a large number of Seba fighters.
Nearly one million people have been internally displaced in war-torn Yemen. These people have come to the center of the new conflict.
In early 2015, Saudi-backed Yemen’s ruling President Abd Rabbu Mansour al-Hadi fled to Saudi Arabia in the face of attacks by Houthi rebels. The Saudi-led military coalition launched a campaign against the Houthis in Yemen to oust the ousted president.
After the start of the campaign, the political crisis in Yemen intensified rather than ended. There are currently two active factions in Yemen. Relying on military cooperation between Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, the south of the country is still under the control of the Mansour Hadi-led government, while the north is completely controlled by Houthi rebels.
The Yemeni conflict is seen as a Saudi-Iranian “shadow war” over dominance in the Middle East. The Middle East’s oil-rich and once prosperous country has been reduced to rubble by a series of civil wars and conflicts. The United Nations says more than half of Yemen’s population is in dire need of food and medicine.
Source: Arab News, Reuters.