At Least 35 Killed as Government, Separatists Clash in South Yemen

Artillery pounds airport, threatens ceasefire

In South Yemen’s Shabwa Province, a tenuous ceasefire between pro-Saudi forces and the separatists is built around mutual attempts to resist the Houthis, who have been trying to get into the area to contest oilfields.

The ceasefire may be coming to an end, however, with intense fighting between the government forces and separatists, that started Sunday and continued into Wednesday, with at least 35 killed, mostly in intense artillery strikes.

Tensions in the south center on Saudi-backed government and the UAE-backed separatists. Shabwa’s governor, himself aligned with the UAE, fired a police chief over the weekend who was seen as anti-UAE, and this was a big part of the new fighting.

The southern government has issued a statement of support for the governor, and ordered the Giants Brigades to the province to “confront the rebellion.”

The fighting centered on Ataq, with artillery fire dangerously close to the airport. Yemen’s presidential council reportedly sees this as a challenge.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of Antiwar.com.