Houthi drones 'shot down' by Yemeni military in Marib region

Houthi drones 'shot down' by Yemeni military in Marib region
2 min read
01 July, 2021
Yemen's Houthi rebels allegedly launched two drones which the nation's military claims to have taken out in the Marib region.
Marib is a key holdout against the Houthis for the internationally recognised authorities [AFP/Getty-file photo]

Yemen's Houthi rebels allegedly launched two drones that were shot down by the nation's military in the Marib region, home to a city by the same name which is a crucial holdout for the internationally recognised authorities.

The Yemen Army Media English-language Twitter account released a message confirming the take-down on Wednesday.

"The air defence of Yemen['s] army troops managed to shoot down 2 Iranian-backed Houthis [sic] militia's drones [in] western Marib," it said, though no further details were provided.

The Houthis have yet to release a statement on the matter, according to the Anadolu Agency.

Earlier on Wednesday, the Yemen Army Media account posted a similarly worded tweet suggesting that it had taken out a Houthi drone, specifying that this was specifically in the Sirwah area of Marib.

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Attached to this is a video depicting what appears to be an out-of-operation, downed drone, with soldiers explaining the circumstances surrounding it.

One of them tells the camera the drone was grounded on Tuesday.

It is not clear if this drone was one of the two referenced in the later tweet.

Yemen's conflict flared in 2014 when the Houthis seized the capital Sanaa, prompting the Saudi-led intervention to prop up the government the following year.

While the UN and Washington are pushing for an end to the war, the Houthis have demanded the re-opening of Sanaa airport, closed under a Saudi blockade since 2016, before any ceasefire or negotiations.

Currently, the Houthis are engaged in fierce battle with government forces to capture control of Marib.

Earlier this week, clashes between rebels and Yemeni government fighters killed at least 111 in Marib in three days, pro-government sources said, following a renewed offensive by Houthi insurgents

Control of the oil-rich region of Marib would strengthen the Houthis' bargaining position in peace talks, but the battle has also raised fears of a humanitarian catastrophe, as many Yemenis had fled to the area to escape fighting in other parts of the country.

Separately, the Houthis made headlines on Wednesday after Human Rights Watch slammed the "unfair trial" of model Entisar Al-Hammadi, who has been held for several months.

The model, who is of Ethiopian and Yemeni heritage, has appeared in court on apparent charges of indecent acts and drug possession.