Yemen’s army kills dozens of Houthis in clashes in eastern Hodeidah

The army also announced that the Amaliqa Brigades opened safe routes for displaced civilians to leave the areas of Kilo 16 and Kilo 10. (File/AFP)
Updated 09 September 2018
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Yemen’s army kills dozens of Houthis in clashes in eastern Hodeidah

  • A large number of families fled the area where their homes were at risk of cross fire
  • Houthis used civilians in the region on as human shields as the army advanced toward them

DUBAI: Dozens of Houthi militants were killed and many others wounded in a military operation launched by units of the Yemeni army, east of Hodeidah, Saudi state-news channel Al-Ekhbariya reported Sunday morning.
During the operation, the Amaliqa Brigades — captured several militants, including leaders, as well as weapons and equipment left behind by the fleeing militia, according to a statement on the Yemeni Armed Forces official website September net.
The army also announced that the Amaliqa Brigades opened safe routes for displaced civilians to leave the areas of Kilo 16 and Kilo 10.
The military source said a large number of families fled the area where their homes were at risk of cross fire, and were escorted to safe zones where they were given medical treatment and food.
The source said the Houthis used civilians in the region on as human shields as the army advanced toward them.


At least 11 killed, 20 wounded in attack on military parade in southwest Iran

Updated 49 min 23 sec ago
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At least 11 killed, 20 wounded in attack on military parade in southwest Iran

  • Paramedics could be seen helping someone in military fatigues laying on the ground
  • Saturday's attack comes after a coordinated June 7, 2017 Daesh assault on parliament and the shrine of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini in Tehran

TEHRAN: Gunmen attacked an annual Iranian military parade Saturday in the country's oil-rich southwest, killing at least 11 members of the country's elite Revolutionary Guard and wounding 20 others, local media reported.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for the assault in Ahvaz, which saw gunfire spray into a crowd of marching Guardsmen, bystanders and government officials watching from a nearby riser. However, Iran faced a bloody assault last year from Daesh and Arab separatists in the region have attacked oil pipelines there in the past.

State television aired footage of the aftermath of the assault on Ahvaz's Quds, or Jerusalem, Boulevard, which like many other places around the country saw an annual parade marking the start of Iran's long 1980s war with Iraq. The images included paramedics trying to help one person in military fatigues as other armed security personnel shouted at each other. The semi-official ISNA news agency published photographs of the attack's aftermath, with bloodied troops in dress uniforms helping each other walk away.

A local news agency in Khuzestan province, of which Ahvaz is the capital, aired grainy mobile phone footage showing parade goers fleeing as soldiers lay flat on the ground. Gunfire rang out in the background.

"Security forces have restored security in the area but the parade has totally been disrupted," a reporter on the scene for Iranian state television said by phone in a live broadcast. "People have been killed but we have no figures yet."

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on Twitter blamed regional countries and their "US masters" for the attack and warned that "Iran will respond swiftly and decisively in defense of Iranian lives." He said children and journalists were casualties in the attack.

Zarif added that the gunmen were "terrorists recruited, trained, armed & paid by a foreign regime." He did not immediately elaborate. However, Arab separatist groups in the region have launched attacks on oil pipelines there in the past.

Reports of how the attack unfolded remained unclear immediately afterward. The state TV reporter said the gunfire came from a park behind a riser. The semi-official Fars news agency, which is close to the Guard, said two gunmen on a motorcycle wearing khaki uniforms carried out the attack.

The state-run IRNA news agency said over 20 people had been wounded, including a woman and a child. The semi-official Tasnim news agency said at least eight member of the Guard had been killed.

Khuzestan Gov. Gholamreza Shariati told IRNA that two gunmen were killed and other two were arrested.

Who carried out the assault also remained in question. State television immediately described the assailants as "takfiri gunmen," a term previously used to describe Daesh. Iran has been deeply involved in the fight against Daesh in Iraq and has aided embattled Syrian President Bashar Assad in his country's long war.

Among those involved are members of the Revolutionary Guard, a paramilitary force answerable only to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. The Guard also has vast holdings in Iran's economy.

Meanwhile, Guard spokesman Gen. Ramazan Sharif told ISNA that an Arab separatist group carried out the attack, without elaborating. However, those groups in the past previously have only attacked unguarded oil pipelines at night.

Saturday's attack comes after a coordinated June 7, 2017 Daesh assault on parliament and the shrine of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini in Tehran. At least 18 people were killed and more than 50 wounded.

Khomeini led the 1979 Islamic Revolution that toppled the Western-backed shah to become Iran's first supreme leader until his death in 1989. The assault shocked Tehran, which largely has avoided militant attacks in the decades after the tumult surrounding the Islamic Revolution.