Fighting flared despite ceasefire that paved way for ongoing peace talks in Kuwait
Fierce fighting between government forces and Houth rebels in Shabwa governorate south Yemen on Sunday claimed the lives of 65 fighters — 28 insurgents and 20 soldiers — a senior military officer said.
“A total of 42 Houthis (Houthi rebels) and 23 of our men were killed in the fighting, which continued into the evening,” said General Misfer al-Harithi, who commands the army’s 19th Infantry Battalion.
Harithi said the clashes erupted when rebels and allied forces loyal to former president Ali Abdullah Saleh attacked government positions in Bayhan district on the border between Shabwa and Marib provinces.
Troops then counter-attacked and pushed the rebels back. “Our forces managed to recapture several positions,” Harithi said. “We will not stop fighting until we take control of the entire sector,” he added.
The area where the fighting is taking place is the only part of Shabwa province still controlled by the rebels.
Forces loyal to President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi, backed by the firepower of the Saudi-led coalition, managed to drive rebels out of Shabwa and four other southern provinces last summer.
Sunday’s fighting flared despite an early April ceasefire that paved the way for ongoing peace talks in Kuwait.