Yemen army clashes with Houthis turn deadly | News | Al Jazeera

Yemen army clashes with Houthis turn deadly

Renewed clashes in northern province of Amran between army and Houthis kill twelve.

    Twelve people have been killed in clashes between Yemeni forces and Shia rebels on the outskirts of the northern city of Amran, a local official and tribal sources said.

    The rebels, known as Houthis or Ansarullah, had travelled to Amran to take part in a demonstration, but shooting erupted on Saturday when they insisted on crossing a checkpoint to the northern entrance to the city with their weapons, an official told the AFP news agency.

    Eight rebels were among the dead, as well as two soldiers and two civilians, a local official and tribal sources said.

    A senior security official in Sanaa said orders have been given to prevent Houthis from entering Amran, as the army dispatched reinforcements from the 310nd armoured brigade.

    The military also set up more checkpoints around the city as rebels attempted to enter from the east and west, local sources said.

    Last week, Houthis armed with assault rifles paraded through Amran along with vehicles fitted with rocket launchers, demanding the sacking of what they consider a corrupt government.

    The Houthis have fought the central government in Sanaa for years, complaining of marginalisation under former President Ali Abdullah Saleh, who was ousted in 2012 following a year of protests.

    Last month, President Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi and party leaders in Sanaa agreed to transform Yemen into a six-region federation as part of a political transition.

    The rebels, who complain that the country would be divided into rich and poor regions under the plan, have been trying to enlarge their zone of influence by pushing out from their mountain strongholds in the far north to areas closer to the capital.

    In early February, they seized areas of Amran province in fighting with local tribes that left more than 150 people dead. Military sources said last week the rebel objective was to seize Amran city and, from there, lay siege to the capital.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    What obstacles do young women in technology have to overcome to achieve their dreams? Play this retro game to find out.

    The State of Lebanon

    The State of Lebanon

    Amid deepening regional rivalries what does the future hold for Lebanon's long established political dynasties?

    Exploited, hated, killed: The lives of African fruit pickers

    Exploited, hated, killed: Italy's African fruit pickers

    Thousands of Africans pick fruit and vegetables for a pittance as supermarkets profit, and face violent abuse.