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Saudi Arabia intensifies airstrikes on Yemen

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 picture taken on November 16, 2015 shows Saudi F-15 fighter jets preparing to take off for operations in Yemen, at the Khamis Mushayt military airbase, some 880 km from the capital Riyadh. (By AFP)

Saudi warplanes have intensified the airstrikes on Yemen to support militants loyal to Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi — who has resigned as Yemen’s president — fighting against Yemeni forces, despite a UN-brokered ceasefire.

Saudi fighter jets conducted nearly 10 airstrikes on the districts of Rahba Saeed and Hama Thawaba at the foot of Hailan Mountain, east of Sirwah district in the province of Ma’rib, Beirut-based al-Mayadeen television reported.

The Yemeni army and Popular Committees, however, managed to thwart a wide-scale attack by the pro-Hadi forces on the districts.

A few hours before the new airstrikes, one person was killed and five others were injured in a Saudi air raid on the district of Mahjaza in Sirwah.

Saudi warplanes also attacked the Nihm district of Sana’a Province as the Yemeni forces took control of the al-Aswad Mountain.

The Yemeni Defense Ministry said that many pro-Hadi forces were killed and injured as the Yemeni forces took the al-Aswad Mountain on the outskirts of Nihm district, northeast of Sana’a.

The Saudi jets reportedly launched eight airstrikes on several areas in the district.

The Saudi air raids also hit Ghayl district in the northern province of Jawf while pro-Hadi forces fired artillery shells at Matun district in the same province.

Meanwhile, new fierce clashes erupted between the Saudi-backed forces and the Yemeni troops in al-Zaher district in the central province of al-Bayda.

The two sides also exchanged artillery fire in Wazi’iyah district in southwestern Ta’izz Province.

Clashes also continued between Yemeni forces and the Saudi forces on the Yemeni-Saudi borders while intense Saudi overflights were reported over the border districts of Harad and Abbas in the Yemeni province of Hajjah.

The Saudi attacks come despite UN-mediated talks in Kuwait between the representatives of Yemen’s Hadi and a delegation comprising of the Houthi Ansarullah movement and its allies. A ceasefire agreement had been announced before the peace talks.

The Houthi delegation has warned that such blatant cases of truce violation could lead to a full collapse of the peace talks.

Yemen has seen almost daily military attacks by Saudi Arabia since late March 2015, with internal sources putting the toll from the bloody aggression at about 10,000. The Saudi military aggression was launched to restore power to Hadi, who is a staunch ally of Riyadh.

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