World, Middle East

Yemen’s Houthis, allies strike site near Bab al-Mandab

Houthi militiamen reportedly fire ‘ballistic missile’ at Yemeni troop concentrations deployed near strategic waterway

06.01.2017
Yemen’s Houthis, allies strike site near Bab al-Mandab File photo

By Murad al-Arifi

TAIZ, Yemen

Yemen’s Shia Houthi militia group and its allies launched an attack on a military site near the Bab al-Mandab Strait on Thursday, killing a number of government soldiers, sources from both sides of the conflict have said.

Fahman al-Subaihi, a government field commander, said Houthi militiamen and allied forces loyal to former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh had fired a "ballistic missile" at the Shaab al-Jen military camp, which is located near the strategic waterway.

According to al-Subaihi, the missile attack left six government soldiers dead and dozens more injured.

Houthi officials quoted by Yemen’s Houthi-linked SABA press agency said militiamen had fired the missile at a concentration of government troops deployed at the army camp.

The press agency quoted an unnamed Houthi military source as saying that "dozens" of government personnel had been killed and injured by the missile strike.

In a related development, Saudi-led coalition warplanes reportedly struck a number of sites affiliated with the Houthis and their allies in the city of Dhobab and the Al-Jadid area -- including the Al-Omary army camp -- in the southwestern Taiz province near Aden.

According to local sources, the airstrikes led to the destruction of several Houthi military vehicles and at least one rocket platform.

Recent weeks have seen almost daily clashes between the Houthis and their allies on one hand and pro-government forces on the other in Dhobab and the Kahboub area near the Bab al-Mandab Strait.

The fighting, however, has seen little progress achieved by either side.

While the Houthis seek to establish control over the Kahboub Mountain region in the southwestern Lahij province, pro-government forces are fighting to take western parts of Lahij and Taiz, which would allow them to secure the territory along the Bab al-Mandeb.

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