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Clashes kill pro-Hadi commander in Yemen: Report

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
A militant loyal to Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, Yemen’s resigned president, salutes on top of a tank at a checkpoint on a road in Ta'izz on April 11, 2016. ©AFP

The commander of an army brigade loyal to Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, Yemen’s resigned president, has been killed in clashes with Houthi Ansarullah fighters while a shaky truce is in place in the war-torn country.

According to loyalist military sources and medics, a Houthi sniper fatally shot Major General Zaid al-Huri, early Wednesday in the northeast of Sana’a Province. They said the Houthi fighters fired a mortar round in the same area, wounding six loyalist soldiers.

Pro-Hadi Major Abdullah Hasan said two militants were killed and seven injured in several hours of overnight clashes with Houthis in Ma'rib Province. At least one Houthi fighter was also killed and several hurt and captured during the Ma'rib fighting, Hasan added.

The confrontations came as the ceasefire between Yemen’s warring sides took effect at midnight (2100 GMT) on April 10. The truce was announced by the UN special envoy for Yemen, Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, as a step to calm the situation ahead of peace talks scheduled to be held in Kuwait on April 18.

In a statement, a Houthi military official accused loyalist forces and Saudi Arabia of "violating the ceasefire" on Tuesday in the provinces of Ma’rib, Jawf and Ta'izz.

In breach of the truce, Saudi mercenaries hit several areas in Sana’a’s Nihm District with Katyusha missiles. They further targeted positions held by the Yemeni army and Popular Committees in areas across the provinces of Jawf, Ta'izz, Shabwah and Bayda while Saudi fighter jets also violated the airspace of the same regions.

A Yemeni boy runs past buildings that were damaged by Saudi airstrikes in Sana’a on March 23, 2016. ©AFP

Saudi Arabia has been engaged in a deadly military campaign against Yemen since March 26, 2015 in a bid to reinstate Hadi and undermine the Houthi movement, which took over state matters after Hadi resigned.

Over 9,400 Yemenis, including 4,000 women and children, have lost their lives in the Saudi airstrikes.

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