Arab Times

Qatar announces first soldier death in Yemen

13 rebels killed by loyalists in ambush

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DOHA, Nov 11, (Agencies): A Qatari soldier serving with the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen has been killed, Qatar’s first fatality of the conflict, the foreign minister said on Wednesday.

“We congratula­te ourselves and our nation for the martyrdom of a son of our homeland in Yemen,” Khalid bin Mohammad Al-Attiyah announced on Twitter. “May God accept him in the highest heavens and bestow patience and solace on his family.”

The death was later confirmed by state media, who named the soldier as Mohammed Hamid Suleiman.

“Qatar armed forces announced the death of Mohammed Hamid Suleiman... on duty with the Arab coalition forces participat­ing in the operation of restoring hope in the Republic of Yemen,” reported the Qatar News Agency. No further details were provided about the soldier or of the circumstan­ces of his death. There have been no previous deaths reported among the Qatari force though two soldiers had previously been injured, said officials.

Qatar sent 1,000 troops into Yemen in September as part of the Arab coalition battling Iran-backed Shiite rebels.

Pro-government forces on Wednesday killed 13 rebel fighters in an ambush in Yemen’s south after the insurgents took back several positions in the area, a military source said.

The Houthi rebels were travelling in two military vehicles south of Damt, the Daleh province’s second-largest city, which they and their allies recaptured on Saturday.

Forces loyal to President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi attacked them with rocket- propelled grenades and machinegun­s, the source said.

The loyalists, backed by Saudi-led coalition strikes, supplies and troops, pushed the rebels out of Daleh and four other southern provinces in July.

But the rebels this weekend recaptured several positions in the south.

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