Several brigades abandon Houthi militia

Brig. Gen. Ahmad Al-Assiri.

Brig. Gen. Ahmad Al-Assiri.

The unabated strikes by coalition forces in Yemen are fully serving the purpose of disarming Houthi militants by degrading their military structure in order to pave the way for restoration of peaceful life as well as the legitimate government of President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, the Saudi-led coalition said on Wednesday.

“Our aim was to destroy Houthi militia stocks of ballistic missiles and other fire power, which we succeeded in doing. Besides that, their movements are completely under check to deny them any attempt for their asymmetric warfare techniques and instead of further advancement, the militia is on the backfoot, which will force them to surrender,” said Brig. Gen. Ahmad Al-Assiri, a consultant in the office of the defense minister.

He added that the militias are in a worse condition after being abandoned by a number of brigades including the 123, 127 and 133.

“All signs indicate that the militias have lost concentration and in the wake of arms embargo, they are resorting to isolated operations in order to redeploy by moving some tanks toward Aden and other cities to capture Yemeni fighter jets,” he said.

“The coalition troops have full information of such locations including Houthi hideouts and have conducted strikes to check their movements,” he said.

About a meeting between Defense Minister Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sissi, the spokesman said, “Since Saudi Arabia and Egypt are allied partner in the operation, this is important to have a regular meeting between allies for better coordination for the success of the campaign.”

Al-Assiri said once the objective of airstrikes are achieved, land operations will start to restore legitimacy.

He said relief work continues to proceed at a good rate with tangible relief measures on the ground to help people.

Asked if Iran has expressed a desire to speak to the Houthis about stopping war, Al-Assiri said: “Iran played a role in arming the militia that is killing the people in Yemen. The best thing Iran can do is to stop supporting the militia in the larger interest of the safety and security of the people in Yemen.”

Reacting to reports that former President Ali Abdullah Saleh wanted to exit Yemen safely, he said the life of the people of Yemen and their safety and security is important and not of those who put the civilians’ lives in danger.

Saleh has sent envoys to a number of GCC capitals in an effort to gain safe exit for himself and his family out of Yemen by denying his links to Houthi militias, Al Arabiya Channel reported citing a GCC official.

Former Yemeni Foreign Minister Abu Bakr Al-Qirbi is reportedly on a tour of Arab capitals as he attempts to enhance Saleh’s image, a mission the unnamed official termed “impossible” which risks Qirbi’s credibility and career.

About land operations, he said there is constant pressure “and even today there were some skirmishes after Border Guards spotted movements and gatherings of the militias near the southern border but their attempts failed.”

The coalition also airdropped military and medical supplies to local armed groups that have been resisting the Houthi advance into the South.


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