More than 90 Houthi soldiers killed in coalition raids on Al-Bayda

More than 90 Houthi soldiers have been killed by Arab coalition fighters in Al-Bayda. (Reuters)
Updated 13 January 2018
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More than 90 Houthi soldiers killed in coalition raids on Al-Bayda

LONDON: More than 90 Houthi militia soldiers have been killed and dozens wounded in raids carried out by Arab coalition fighters on a training camp in the Al-Bayda governorate, Al-Ekhbariya reported.
The media center for the Popular Resistance in the governorate said that coalition aircraft launched more than 7 raids on the Al-Qaseer camp overlooking the city of Rada’a and a training camp for the militias in an area situated between the regions of Qarn Assad and Reyaam in the governorate of Al-Arsh.
A statement was published on the Yemeni armed forces “26 September” website and said that Houthi leader Ahmed Saif Al-Dhahab was among the dead.


Daesh destruction of rural Iraq hinders residents’ return: Amnesty

Updated 21 min 34 sec ago
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Daesh destruction of rural Iraq hinders residents’ return: Amnesty

  • Amnesty reported Daesh fighters burnt or chopped down orchards, sabotaged wells and stole or destroyed vital farming equipment
  • The extremists seized control of much of northern Iraq in the summer of 2014

BAGHDAD: The Daesh group’s deliberate destruction of agriculture in northern Iraq has hindered the return of hundreds of thousands of residents, Amnesty International said in a report released Thursday.
The New York-based rights group said Daesh fighters burnt or chopped down orchards and sabotaged wells by filling them with rubble, oil or other materials. The militants also stole or destroyed pumps, cables, generators, transformers and vital electricity lines.
Amnesty called on the Iraqi government to repair rural infrastructure and compensate the displaced so they can return to their homes.
Daesh seized control of much of northern Iraq in the summer of 2014. US-backed Iraqi forces gradually drove the militants from all the territory under their control, declaring victory a year ago after a costly campaign that destroyed entire neighborhoods and towns.
“The damage to Iraq’s countryside is as far-reaching as the urban destruction, but the consequences of the conflict on Iraq’s rural residents are being largely forgotten,” said Richard Pearshouse, senior crisis adviser at Amnesty.
He said the report focuses on the “deliberate, wanton destruction” around the area of Sinjar, where the extremists massacred and enslaved thousands of members of the Yazidi religious minority. About half of Sinjar’s residents have returned, with many others saying they have nothing to go back to.
Beyond Sinjar, Amnesty’s report gave sobering figures for all of Iraq.
“The conflict against IS eviscerated Iraq’s agricultural production, now an estimated 40 percent lower than 2014 levels,” it said. “Before IS, around two-thirds of Iraq’s farmers had access to irrigation — only three years later, this had fallen to 20 percent. Around 75 percent of livestock was lost, spiking to 95 percent in some areas.”
Syrian and Iraqi forces have gradually driven Daesh out of nearly all the territory it once held. But the group still maintains a presence in the Syrian desert and remote areas along the border. Many have warned it could stage a comeback if economic grievances are not addressed.
“Unless there is urgent government assistance, the long-term damage inflicted on Iraq’s rural environment will reverberate for years to come,” Pearshouse said. “When IS tore through Iraq in 2014, it thrived off rural poverty and resentments, so Iraq’s government should be concerned that something similar could happen again.”