Pro-Saudi Fighters Attack Yemeni City of Taiz as Gains Mount

Shabwa Province Also Seized in Weekend Offensive

Forces loyal to Saudi Arabia have attacked the Yemeni city of Taiz, the third largest city in the nation, today in an effort to oust the Shi’ite Houthis from the area and bring it under the control of the “government-in-exile” which is increasingly making gains across the country’s south.

Tribal allies of this force claimed to have seized an important mountaintop near Taiz, though at present the indications are that the pro-Houthi factions within the military are still in control of the military bases inside the city. Still, officials are treating this as a battle all but won over the Houthis.

Over the weekend, the pro-Saudi forces also captured the Shabwa Province, when Houthi forces abandoned it after being promised a safe route into their territory. Shabwa was one of the regions dominated by Islamists, and the Houthi presence was never able to hold much of the territory.

With the capture of significant territory of their own, the pro-Saudi faction is facing growing calls to return ot the negotiating table on a resolution to the war. At the same time, recent gains have many expressing belief that they can win the war outright, making them less interested in negotiation.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.