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Yemen Pro-government Troops Retake Rebel-held Base in South

Yemen Pro-government Troops Retake Rebel-held Base in South
Fighters loyal to exiled President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi. (Saleh Al Obeidi/AFP/Getty Images)

Tuesday, 04 August 2015 06:25 AM

SANAA, Yemen (AP) — Pro-government Yemeni forces battling Shiite rebels say they have taken control of a military base in the country's south, a key facility seized by rebels earlier on in the crisis and that had once housed U.S. intelligence operations.

A statement signed by the Defense Ministry announced the "liberation of Al-Anad military base," thanking the Saudi-led coalition that has been targeting the rebels, known as Houthis, in an air-campaign since March. Ministry officials and military leaders from the exiled government in Saudi Arabia are in the southern city of Aden, and the statement was issued from there.

A rebel official denied the base had been taken in a statement carried by rebel-controlled news agency SABA.

Pro-government troops, backed by tanks and armored personnel carriers, pushed toward base for days as coalition airstrikes cleared the path for their advance. Military officials said allied fighters have cut off the main road between al-Anad and Taiz, which has seen heavy fighting, for the first time since the Houthis took control of it in March.

Al-Anad was once the site of U.S. operations against al-Qaida's powerful Yemeni affiliate.

The fighting in Yemen pits the Houthis and troops loyal to former President Ali Abdullah Saleh against southern separatists, local and tribal militias, Sunni Islamic militants and loyalists of exiled President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi.

After months of fierce fighting, pro-government forces recently pushed rebels out of Aden and advanced in Taiz, Yemen's third-largest city.

Since last month, they have been supplied by sea in Aden, with new heavy and medium weapons and ammunition such as tanks, artillery, missiles and armored vehicles in shipments from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

This story has been corrected to reflect that the Defense Ministry's statement was issued from Aden, Yemen, not from Saudi Arabia.

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Pro-government Yemeni forces battling Shiite rebels say they have taken control of a military base in the country's south, a key facility seized by rebels earlier on in the crisis and that had once housed U.S. intelligence operations.A statement signed by the Defense...
ML, Yemen
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2015-25-04
Tuesday, 04 August 2015 06:25 AM
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