Pro-Saudi Forces in Yemen Claim New Gains in Central Aden

Fierce Fighting Reported as Warplanes Pound District

The Tawahi District of the Yemeni port city of Aden has reportedly fallen under the control of the pro-Saudi forces loyal to the “government-in-exile” based in Riyadh, after another day of major battles in the area and heavy airstrikes.

The important central district on the Aden Peninsula isn’t just a battle of two factions, however, as fighters from the southern secessionist movement also moved into the area, seizing some state media outlets.

The southern secessionists have mostly backed the Saudi-backed government in recent fights, likely to keep the Saudis off their backs, though they remain determined to carve out an independent state in the south, which is the same area the pro-Saudi faction believes will be its own power base in the war.

This has been a problem with the Saudi war since it began in March: it doesn’t recognize the broad number of other factions active besides the Shi’ite Houthis and the pro-Saudi Hadi faction. In ignoring that, they’ve handed Mukalla to al-Qaeda, given ISIS free reign in the west, and have also allowed the southern secessionists to flourish.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of