The military coalition of Arab countries intervening in Yemen, led by Saudi Arabia, announced today that it had killed more than 400 Huthis in the last four days in Marib, guaranteeing that it had stopped the rebels’ advance on the strategic city.
Coalition spokesman Turki al-Maliki said in a statement quoted by Efe that the air strikes had caused “the destruction of 15 militia military vehicles [Houthi] and the loss of more than 400 terrorist elements during the last 96 hours” in the Al Abdiyah district, south of the northern city of Marib.
Al-Maliki said these operations had been ongoing for 18 days and had managed to halt the advance of the Iranian-backed Shiite movement in the district, which had recently been seized by the Huthis.
Al Abdiyah district is one of the largest in the provincial capital of Marib, the last internationally recognized stronghold of the Yemeni government in the north of the country, with around 31,500 inhabitants.
The Huthis, an Iran-backed Shiite movement, have been carrying out an offensive since February on this strategic province, rich in oil and gas resources and linking the provinces of Al-Bayda (central), Shabwa (south) and Al- Jawf (north) with the capital, Sanaa, which has been in the hands of the rebel group since 2014.
Al-Maliki appealed to the “UN and NGOs [organizações não-governamentais] to assume their humanitarian responsibilities to the civilians imprisoned in Al Abdiyah” for the advance of the Huthis.
The International Organization for Migration warned last Thursday that escalating hostilities in and around Marib had forced thousands of people to flee, causing an “alarming increase in displacements” since early September.
Since 2015 the Saudi coalition of Arab countries has been intervening in the internal conflict in Yemen on behalf of the internationally recognized President, Abdo Rabu Mansur Hadi, who is in exile in Riyadh following the conquest by the Huthis of large parts of central and western Yemen .