SANAA (Dispatches) – Yemen’s Army aided by popular forces have taken control of two strategic sites close to Ma’rib city, the Saudi-backed mercenaries’ last northern stronghold, a military source said on Wednesday.
“The army captured Malboda mountain in the northwestern district of Sirwah on Tuesday following a 48-hour fighting against the government troops, and advanced to Himat al-Dhiyab hill, about 15 km northwest of Ma’rib city,” the source in the city told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.
The army’s advance came despite airstrikes by the Saudi-led coalition backing the former government troops.
Heavy fighting also took place in other western districts of Ma’rib province, where the army has pushed forward in the Bakthah area in the south of Jabal Murad district and al-Mushaireaf area to the south of Rahabah district, leaving dozens on both sides dead, the same source added.
Meanwhile, al-Masirah TV reported 50 Saudi airstrikes in the past 48 hours that targeted army reinforcements and positions in Ma’rib, noting that army forces have made important progress in Sirwah.
Yemen’s allied defense forces have decisively escalated their counterattacks on Saudi Arabia’s allies in Ma’rib, the capital of a hugely strategic west-central province of the same name, and are reportedly on the verge of recapturing the whole city.
The Yemeni army and Popular Committees were reported on Tuesday to have advanced as far as the city’s government buildings.
The Yemeni forces “are not far from” reestablishing Sana’a’s sovereignty over the city, Yemeni media sources noted.
The Saudi-led coalition invaded Yemen in March 2015 in a self-proclaimed bid to restore power in the country to Saudi Arabia’s favorite officials.
Seven years on, however, it is still nowhere close to realizing that avowed aim.
The invasion has, meanwhile, killed tens of thousands of Yemenis in the process. The military aggression and a simultaneous siege of Yemen has also turned the Arab world’s already poorest nation into the scene of, what the United Nations has deplored as, the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.