Saudi-led coalition airdrops arms for Yemen loyalists

Map of Yemen-yalibnan

Map of Yemen-yalibnan

The Saudi-led coalition in Yemen has dropped arms and ammunition to pro-government fighters in Taez, the central city besieged by Shiite Huthi rebels, military sources said Wednesday.

Coalition planes “parachuted three shipments of arms and ammunition to help our fighters in southwest Taez,” a source told AFP, adding they included RPG launchers and a variety of weapons.

The airdrop took place before dawn on Tuesday and Wednesday, he said.

Clashes raged Wednesday in Taez between the rebels and fighters allied with President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi, another military source said.

The Huthis overran the capital Sanaa in September 2014 and went on to seize control of several regions, aided by forces loyal to ousted president Ali Abdullah Saleh.

A Saudi-led Arab coalition launched an air campaign against the rebels in late March, in support of Hadi who fled to Riyadh.

Taez has remained in the hands of fighters loyal to Hadi.

In July, Hadi loyalists backed by the Saudi-led Arab coalition drove out the rebels from five southern provinces and have set their sights on Sanaa.

Around 5,000 people have been killed in the conflict since March, more than half of them civilians, according to UN estimates.

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