Saturday, 22 January, 2022

Over 90 Yemeni rebels killed near Marib

RIYADH: The Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen said Friday it had killed at least 92 Huthi rebels in air strikes on two districts near the strategic city of Marib, reports AFP.

The deaths are the latest among hundreds that the coalition says have been killed in recent fighting around Marib, and come during a second week of reported intense bombing.

"Operations targeted 16 military vehicles and killed more than 92 terrorist elements" in the past 24 hours, the coalition said in a statement, carried by the official Saudi Press Agency.

The Iran-backed Huthis rarely comment on losses, and the numbers could not be independently verified by AFP.

The coalition has for the past two weeks reported almost daily strikes around Marib.

Most of the previously announced strikes were in Abdiya, about 100 kilometres (60 miles) from Marib -- the internationally recognised government's last bastion in oil-rich northern Yemen.

The latest air strikes reported were in the districts of Al-Jawba, some 50 kilometres south of Marib, and Al-Kassara, 30 kilometres northwest.

The Huthis began a major push to seize Marib in February, and have renewed their offensive since September after a lull.

The Yemeni civil war began in 2014 when the Huthis seized the capital Sanaa, 120 kilometres west of Marib, prompting Saudi-led forces to intervene to prop up the government the following year.

Tens of thousands of people have died and millions have been displaced, in what the United Nations has called the world's worst humanitarian crisis.

The UN Security Council on Wednesday called for "de-escalation" in Yemen, in a unanimously adopted statement to counter "the growing risk of large-scale famine" in the country.