Yemeni army forces, backed by allied fighters from the Popular Committees, have reportedly seized strategic areas in the country’s capital province of Sana’a from Saudi-backed militiamen loyal to former President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi.
Lebanon-based Arabic-language al-Mayadeen television news network, citing Yemeni military sources, reported on Friday that Yemeni soldiers and their allies have managed to wrest control over key areas in the Nihm district, which lies east of the capital Sana’a.
The sources added that the areas cover an expanse of some 3,000 square kilometers, and oversee regions in the neighboring Ma’rib province.
The report added that Yemeni army soldiers and fighters the Popular Committees had taken control of dozens of positions belonging to militants from the al-Qaeda-affiliated Salafist Islah Party.
Also on Friday, three civilians suffered gunshot wounds when Saudi border guards opened fire at residential neighborhoods in the Shada’a district of Yemen’s mountainous northwestern province of Sa’ada.
Elsewhere in Yemen’s northwestern province of ‘Amran, Saudi fighter jets carried out three airstrikes against a number of areas in the Dhi Bin district. There were, however, no immediate reports about possible casualties and the extent of damage caused.
Saudi Arabia and a number of its regional allies launched a devastating campaign against Yemen in March 2015, with the goal of bringing the government of Hadi back to power and crushing the Ansarullah movement.
The US-based Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED), a nonprofit conflict-research organization, estimates that the war has claimed more than 100,000 lives over the past four and a half years.
The UN says over 24 million Yemenis are in dire need of humanitarian aid, including 10 million suffering from extreme levels of hunger.