Saudi coalition says 105 rebels killed in latest Yemen strikes
The Saudi-led coalition said Wednesday it killed 105 Huthi rebels in air strikes around Yemen’s strategic city of Marib, as the insurgents claimed to have almost encircled the city.
he Saudi-led coalition said Wednesday it killed 105 Huthi rebels in air strikes around Yemen’s strategic city of Marib, as the insurgents claimed to have almost encircled the city.
hat brings to nearly 2,000 the number of Huthis the coalition — backing the government — says it has killed around Marib in strikes it has reported almost daily since October 11.
he Iran-backed rebels rarely comment on losses, and AFP could not independently verify the toll.
“Thirteen military vehicles were destroyed and 105” insurgents were killed in strikes in the past 24 hours, the coalition said, according to the official Saudi Press Agency.
he latest bombing was carried out in Al-Jawba, about 50 kilometres (30 miles) south of Marib, and Al-Kassara, 30 kilometres to the northwest.
Marib, capital of the oil-rich province of the same name, is the internationally recognised government’s last bastion in northern Yemen.
he Huthis reportedly said they are tightening their grip around Marib city.
“Our forces have reached the vicinity of the city of Marib, which is nearly surrounded,” said Mohammed Nasser Al-Atefi, who serves as defense minister in the Huthis’ unrecognised government in Sanaa, west of Marib, according to the Al-Akhbar Lebanese daily on Wednesday.
He added that it is “only a matter of time” until they seize it.
In February, the Huthis began a major push to seize Marib, and have renewed their offensive since September after a lull.
Yemen’s civil war began in 2014 when the Huthis gained control of the capital Sanaa, 120 kilometres west of Marib, prompting Saudi-led forces to intervene to prop up the government the following year.
ens of thousands of people have died and millions have been displaced, in what the United Nations calls the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.
he UN Security Council last week called for “de-escalation” in Yemen, in a unanimously adopted statement to counter “the growing risk of large-scale famine” in the country.