Yemen’s Houthis capture strategic sites near Marib city

Sanaa: Yemen’s Houthi rebels have seized control of two strategic sites close to Marib city, the government’s last northern stronghold, a military source said.

“The rebels captured Malboda mountain in the northwestern district of Sirwah on Tuesday following a 48-hour fighting against the government troops, and advanced to Himat al-Dhiyab hill, about 15 km northwest of Marib city,” the source told Xinhua news agency on Wednesday.

The rebel advance came despite airstrikes by the Saudi-led coalition backing the Yemeni government troops.

Heavy fighting also took place in other western districts of Marib province, where the troops have repelled rebel attacks in the Bakthah area in the south of Jabal Murad district and al-Mushaireaf area to the south of Rahabah district, leaving dozens of combatants on both sides dead, the same source added.

Meanwhile, Houthi-run al-Masirah TV reported 50 coalition airstrikes in the past 48 hours that targeted Houthi reinforcements and positions in Marib, noting that its forces have made important progress in Sirwah.

The Houthis began in February a major offensive on Marib in an attempt to seize control of the oil-rich province.