Monday 24 February 2020
News ID: 75564
Publish Date: 26 January 2020 - 22:01
SANAA (Dispatches) -- Fighters from the Houthi movement and their allies in the Yemeni army have gain ground in the battle against Saudi mercenaries in Sanaa province, reports said on Sunday.
Commanders loyal to former Saudi-backed president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi acknowledged that the Houthis had retaken loyalist positions during renewed fighting east of Sanaa.
"Some of these positions had been under government control for three years,” one of the commanders told AFP, referring to the self-proclaimed Hadi administration.
Another pro-Hadi commander said Saudi warplanes had attacked Houthi positions more than 30 times in the last three days to reduce the pressure on the loyalists.
On Friday, the International Crisis Group, a Belgium-based think tank, said Houthi fighters were making "the biggest gains” on the ground against militants.
"At the time of writing, the Houthis appeared to be making the biggest gains on the battlefield, reportedly controlling the important Nihm front north east of Sana’a after several days in which both sides claimed a series of largely symbolic victories while suffering numerous casualties,” it said in a report.
Self-proclaimed defense minister for Hadi fighters, Muhammad Ali al-Maqdishi, implicitly admitted Houthi advances in Nihm district.
At a meeting with loyalist commanders, he referred to what he called a "tactical withdrawal from some positions,” Saba news agency reported.
Maqdishi said the Saudi-backed militants would be redeployed to open a new front against the Houthis.
Recently, a missile attack on a military training camp run by the Riyadh-backed elements in Maarib province killed as many as 116 militants.
Saudi Arabia and the UAE blamed the attack on the Houthis, a claim rejected by the Yemeni fighters.
Saudi Arabia and a coalition of its vassal states launched the war on Yemen in March 2015 in an attempt to reinstall the Hadi regime and eliminate the Houthis.
The military aggression, coupled with a naval blockade, has killed hundreds of thousands of people and plunged Yemen into the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.

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