Rebel-controlled Saba news agency said the “mercenaries of thecoalition of Saudi aggression” had been repelled in Jufeinah and Thatt-Alra, in Marib, with the coalition suffering “heavy losses”. An official spokesman said the Houthis must first comply with UN Security Council Resolution 2216, adopted in April,which requires their effective capitulation-recognition of Hadi as president and withdrawal from Sanaa, Taiz and other major cities.
The Houthis seized Sanaa last September and eventually forcedPresident Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi and his administration to flee to Saudi Arabia. Peace talks in June failed to end the fighting, which has brought the country to the brink of starvation,killed more than 4,500 people and led to a security vacuum that has strengthened Al Qaeda’s Yemen branch.
Coalition countries are thought to have sent several thousand troops to Yemen in an effort to restore President Hadi to power.
According to the same pro-Hadi source, clashes remain ongoing between pro-Hadi and Houthi forces in Taiz’s Al-Bararah district. United Nations special envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed also said on Thursday that both sides, including the Houthi rebels, “will convene in the region next week”.
The UAE Armed Forces have launched a successful ground offensive on the Houthi rebel militias and made advance on the ground in Marib as part of the Saudi-led Arab coalition in Yemen. “The army and the resistance have moved from defense to attack”, one official reportedly said Sunday.
All officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to brief reporters. Saudi Arabia began an air offensive on Yemen in March, driving the country into a humanitarian crisis.
The UAE said a total of 52 of its soldiers – seven more than the 45 it earlier acknowledged – were killed in the Houthi rebel attack.
Information for this article was contributed by Adam Schreck of The Associated Press.