Saudi soldier killed near Yemen border

Saudi soldier killed near Yemen border
Ongoing clashes along Saudi Arabia's tense border with Yemen left one Saudi soldier dead, authorities said on Sunday.
2 min read
25 December, 2016
More than one hundred Saudi soldiers have died since the war began [AFP]
A Saudi soldier was killed in cross-border clashes with Yemen's Houthi rebels, the interior ministry said on Sunday.

The unidentified soldier was injured during a gunfire exchange when Houthis ambushed a border post overnight, a spokesman said, adding that he died before reaching hospital. 

He was the latest of at least 111 Saudi soldiers and civilians to die in the country's south since the kingdom launched a coalition to battle the rebels in March 2015. 

Most Saudi casualties have been from retaliatory cross-border rocket attacks or combat but there have also been previous deadly mine blasts in Jizan.

In Yemen itself, more than 10,000 people have been killed, mostly civilians, since March last year according to the United Nations.

On Sunday a Yemeni military official said that five rebels were killed in a coalition air raid in the southern Shabwa province. 

Also in Shabwa, three armed tribesman were killed in an ambush by fighters belonging to the Yemeni branch of al-Qaeda. 

Yemen's conflict has allowed militant groups including al-Qaeda and the Islamic State group to expand, mainly in the country's vast desert east. 

Meanwhile, President Abdrabbo Mansour Hadi visited the port city of Mukalla on Sunday for the first time since loyalist forces retook it from militants.

In Shibam, around 100 kilometres (65 miles) north of Mukalla, a local official survived an assassination attempt blamed by security sources on al-Qaeda.

The sources said Faraj Neji survived the ambush but that two of his guards were killed.