YEMEN’S Houthis claim control of Saudi villages

SABA quoted a military source as saying yesterday that Houthi militiamen had taken control of the villages of Al-Kars and Al-Dafiniya – along with other villages – east of Al-Bahtit and south of Al-Qarn.

The same source also said that Houthi militiamen had captured a bridge linking Jizan’s Qaem Zubaid and Al-Ibadiya areas and the road to the nearby Al-Khubah area. According to the source, who was not named, “scores” of Saudi soldiers were killed and injured in what he described as a “large scale” Houthi operation that also saw six Saudi armoured vehicles and two combat tanks destroyed.

The news agency went on to report that Saudi army helicopters had bombarded the Al-Khubah area in response. The claims, however, could not be verified by independent sources, while the Saudi authorities have yet to comment on the reports.

According to unofficial Saudi accounts on social media,  Saudi forces managed to repel a Houthi attack on Al-Khubah. Earlier, Saudi authorities said at least 14 people had been injured in the kingdom’s southwestern Dhahran Al-Janoub province by “projectiles” fired from Yemen.

While the authorities did not say who had fired the alleged projectiles, Riyadh has blamed the Houthis for similar missile attacks in the past. Since March of last year, Saudi Arabia has led a Arab air coalition against the Houthis and their allies in an effort to support Yemen’s Saudi-backed government.

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