Ye­men fight­ing kills more than 50

Kuwait Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

More than 50 peo­ple were killed in Ye­men in the past two days in fight­ing pit­ting an Arab coali­tion against Houthi fight­ers backed by troops loyal to former pres­i­dent Ali Ab­dul­lah Saleh, med­i­cal sources and res­i­dents said yes­ter­day. In Taiz, med­i­cal sources said 29 peo­ple in­clud­ing eight civil­ians were killed in clashes in Ye­men’s third largest city, where re­lief work­ers have said fight­ing has blocked food sup­plies and left thou­sands of peo­ple in ex­treme hunger. About 30 peo­ple were killed in fight­ing in Damt dis­trict in Dhalea gov­er­norate in the south, res­i­dents said.

At least 5,600 peo­ple have been killed in seven months of war in Ye­men, the poor­est coun­try on the Ara­bian Penin­sula, and the United Na­tions says the hu­man­i­tar­ian sit­u­a­tion, ex­ac­er­bated by the Arab coali­tion’s block­ade of Ye­meni ports, grows worse ev­ery day. The con­flict pits the Iran-al­lied Houthis and army units loyal to Saleh against armed groups who sup­port ex­iled Pres­i­dent Abd-Rabbu Man­sour Hadi along­side a Saudi-led Arab coali­tion. The coali­tion is fight­ing to re­store Hadi to power fol­low­ing the Houthis’ seizure of con­trol of much of Ye­men in late 2014 and early 2015, and re­verse what it sees as an ex­pan­sion of in­flu­ence by Iran, the re­gional ri­val of Riyadh.

Res­i­dents and of­fi­cials said that pro-Hadi forces seized of two strate­gic en­tre­pots to the city of Damt on Sun­day af­ter be­ing air dropped weapons by coali­tion war­planes, so­lid­i­fy­ing their con­trol over south­ern Ye­men. Peace ef­forts have made only lim­ited progress. All ma­jor com­bat­ants have pub­licly agreed to im­ple­ment UN Se­cu­rity Coun­cil Res­o­lu­tion 2216, which calls on Houthi and Saleh forces to with­draw from the coun­try’s main ci­ties and sur­ren­der arms cap­tured from Ye­meni gov­ern­ment forces. But while Hadi and the coali­tion have pre­vi­ously de­manded that this hap­pen be­fore talks be­gin, the Houthis and Saleh want talks to ad­dress the mech­a­nism for im­ple­ment­ing Res­o­lu­tion 2216. —Reuters

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