Four Yemeni security personnel, including a senior army officer, were killed Wednesday when Shia Houthi militants shelled army positions in the southwestern Taiz province.
The shelling targeted an army outpost in Taiz’s Mawzi district, Abdullah al-Shaabi, a spokesman for forces loyal to President Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi, told Anadolu Agency.
According to al-Shaabi, Colonel Yaslam Saeed al-Yafei, a commander in the Yemeni army’s First Brigade, was killed in the artillery barrage, along with three soldiers.
Taiz’s Mawzi district continues to witness sporadic clashes between the Houthis and allied forces loyal to former President Ali Abdullah Saleh on the one hand, and the Yemeni army, backed by a Saudi-led Arab coalition, on the other.
Earlier this year, the Yemeni army managed to recapture Taiz’s Bab al-Mandab and Mucha and districts, while the Houthis remain in control of the province’s Mawzi and Dhubab districts.
Yemen has remained in a state of war since 2014, when the Houthis and their allies overran much of the country, including capital Sanaa, forcing Hadi’s government to set up a provisional capital in the coastal city of Aden.
The conflict escalated in 2015 when Saudi Arabia and its Arab allies launched a massive air campaign aimed at reversing Houthi military gains and shoring up Hadi’s embattled pro-Saudi government.
According to UN officials, more than 10,000 people have been killed in the fighting to date, while the Red Cross has reported that over 3 million people have fled their homes as a direct result of the conflict.