More than two dozen Saudi-sponsored militants loyal to former Yemeni president Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi have been killed after Yemeni army troops and their allied fighters from Popular Committees carried operations against their bases in the country’s strategic central province of Ma’rib.
Yemeni military sources, who preferred not to be named, told Yemen News Portal website that at least 29 Hadi loyalists and militants affiliated with the Salafist Islah Party were killed on Tuesday in fierce clashes with Yemeni soldiers and their allies.
The sources added that a number of high-ranking militant commanders, some of whom were identified as Saber al-Amiri, Amin Saleh al-Shahari and Ahmad Zaif al-Nahmi, were among the fatalities.
Saudi jets conduct fresh military raids in Yemen
The development took place as Saudi Arabia upped the ante in the war on Yemen by conducting a new round of airstrikes targeting various areas across the crisis-hit country.
Yemen’s al-Masirah television network reported that Saudi warplanes carried out 15 air raids against the Wadi Obaida district, and another 14 against the Sirwah district in Ma’rib province.
Saudi military aircraft also launched five airstrikes against the Jubah district in the same Yemeni province
There were no immediate reports about possible casualties, and the extent of damage caused.
Earlier in the day, Saudi fighter jets had launched eight airstrikes against the Khabb wa ash Sha’af district and three more against the al-Hazm district in Yemen’s northern province of al-Jawf.
The raids reportedly caused severe damage to civilian structures and private properties.
Moreover, Saudi aircraft bombarded the Maqbanah district in the southern Yemeni province of Ta’izz, though no reports about possible casualties were quickly available.
Houthi: Saudi bombardment of Sana’a airport amounts to war crime
Additionally, a senior member of Yemen’s Supreme Political Council denounced the latest Saudi airstrikes against Sana’a airport as a “grave” war crime, dismissing the Saudi-led coalition’s peace proposals as “unfounded and groundless.”
“Repetitive attacks against Sana’a International Airport, which is used to transport Yemeni patients as well as travelers, amount to terrorism against the Republic of Yemen,” Mohammed Ali al-Houthi wrote in a series of posts published on his Twitter page.
He added, “We do not expect the United Nations to take a firm stance against this crime, as it has always been the case with the crimes being perpetrated by the Saudi-led coalition of aggression.”
“Because political money is the driving force for the United Nations and its related agencies and the interests of the Security Council member states precede anything else, we do not rule out that Yemen could be punished instead of the criminal parties that targeted the airport,” Houthi highlighted.
He termed the bombing of Sana’a airport as a direct attack on the UN and its bodies, since they are the agencies which use it and can obtain permits to land there.
He pointed out that the Saudi airstrikes prove that peace initiatives by the coalition of aggression are fairly baseless.
Saudi-led coalition violates Yemen’s Hudaydah truce 126 times in 24 hours
Separately, forces of the Saudi-led military coalition and their mercenaries have violated 126 times during the past 24 hours a ceasefire agreement between warring sides for the western coastal province of Hudaydah.
The official Saba news agency, citing an unnamed source in Yemen’s Liaison and Coordination Officers Operations Room, reported that the violations included dozens of reconnaissance flights over various regions, in addition to numerous counts of artillery shelling.
Unknown gunmen fatally shoot pro-Hadi militant commander
Meanwhile, unidentified gunmen shot and killed a Saudi-backed pro-Hadi militant commander in Yemen’s southern province of Abyan.
Local sources, requesting anonymity, said armed men opened fire and killed Saleh al-Muhazir, commander of the rapid reaction unit of the so-called special security forces, in the coastal town of Shuqrah.
No individual or group has yet claimed responsibility for the act of violence.
Saudi Arabia, backed by the United States and regional allies, launched the war on Yemen in March 2015, with the goal of bringing Hadi’s government back to power and crushing Ansarullah movement.
The war has left hundreds of thousands of Yemenis dead, and displaced millions more. It has also destroyed Yemen’s infrastructure and spread famine and infectious diseases there.
Despite heavily-armed Saudi Arabia’s incessant bombardment of the impoverished country, the Yemeni armed forces and the Popular Committees have grown steadily in strength against the Saudi-led invaders and left Riyadh and its allies bogged down in the country.