Yemen : Northern Shia Muslim rebels known as Houthis, backed by forces loyal to Yemen’s ex-president, took over parts of Yemen, including the capital, Sanaa, and forced the government into exile in the early months of March this year. The rebels accused the government of corruption and of planning to marginalize their heartland within a proposed federal system. Following which, Forces loyal to the government and southern militias regained control of Aden in July, aided by Saudi-led coalition air strikes and troops.
This Saturday, Saudi-led air coalition targeting Shia Houthi rebels in Yemen mistakenly hit a pro-government position, killing at least 20 troops, as confirmed by security officials. At least another 20 people are supposedly injured due to this act of mistaken target bombing. The strike took place between the southern Taiz and Lahj provinces, that region in Yemen which had been witnessing very fierce clashes recently in the immediate past days.
A pro-government security official informed media that probably, the attackers miscalculated a Houthi-presence in the hit-zone, and took on them, presuming that the Houthis were still placed in that region. It is important to note that the Saudi-led coalition has been backing forces in Yemen loyal to the exiled President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi. Pro-Hadi forces retook Lahj and four other provinces in mid-July as part of a southern offensive.
Fighting has catapulted for months in Taiz, Tiaz being that region which had been under the siege of the the rebels since last year. Tiaz has been projected as a route from which the roads to capital capture gets opened, as it has been seen as a gateway to the capital Sanaa.
A separate coalition air strike on Saturday killed 13 Houthi rebels in the desert province of Jawf. Separately, three pro-government fighters were killed in rebel rocket shelling in Marib province east of Sanaa. Hundreds of Sudanese troops reportedly arrived in the southern port city of Aden on Saturday. This troop strength was a preliminary batch of an expected 10,000 reinforcements for the Saudi-led coalition, which are expected to take their positions sooner than later, with a mission of securing Aden – the region which stood witness to a surge of assassinations of pro-government military leaders in recent weeks.
Around 4,500 civilians have been killed in the conflict since March. Additionally, nearly 1.5 million people have been displaced due to long standing conflict. The UN estimated that around 13 million people faced food shortages and 80% of the population needed some form of aid in an urgent basis.