Pro-Saudi Troops Seize Yemeni Border Crossing From Houthis

Thousands of Civilians Hope to Flee Into Saudi Arabia

The Wadia border crossing between Yemen and Saudi Arabia has changed hands today, with forces loyal to the pro-Saudi remnants of the Hadi government seizing it from the Houthi faction, which controls the other border crossings.

The Houthis disputed this claim, with Yemeni state media reporting that the crossing was initially attacked and seized by al-Qaeda forces and some associated mercenaries.

The change of hands of the crossing in the northeastern Hadrawmut Province could be a major change to the humanitarian situation in Yemen, and thousands of civilians have flocked to the crossing, hoping to flee as refugees into neighboring Saudi Arabia.

This will also add substantial pressure on Saudi Arabia to allow more humanitarian aid into the country. The Saudis have allowed only a handful of ships through their naval blockade, and have justified the cutoff of the border on the grounds it was in control of the Houthis. With a crossing now in pro-Saudi hands, they will be virtually obliged to start sending aid through it.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of