Yemen Vice President: We will regain control over every inch of Yemen 

The Vice President of Yemen, Lieutenant General Ali Mohsen Al-Ahmar. (File/AFP)
Updated 11 September 2018

Yemen Vice President: We will regain control over every inch of Yemen 

  • Ali Mohsen Al-Ahmar said his internationally recognized government will continue to liberate Houthi-held areas
  • The vice president’s statements came during a meeting held in Riyadh

DUBAI: The Vice President of Yemen, Lieutenant General Ali Mohsen Al-Ahmar said his internationally recognized government will continue to liberate Houthi-held areas until every inch of the country is under the government’s control and end the suffering of civilians.

The vice president’s statements came during a meeting held in Riyadh with the commander of the First Brigade, Brigadier General Heikal Mohammed Hantaf, Yemen’s state news agency Saba New reported.

During the meeting, Brigadier General Hantaf stressed the need to unify the ranks and gain the support of the civilians to establish the restoration of the state and to build a federal Yemen consisting of six provinces.

The progress of military operations and successive victories in Yemen, including Al-Jouf, were also discussed during the meeting.

Meanwhile, attempts earlier this week to hold peace talks for Yemen were abandoned after three days of waiting for the Houthi movement’s delegation.


Syria regime forces on edge of key rebel-held town

Updated 8 min 30 sec ago

Syria regime forces on edge of key rebel-held town

  • Maaret Al-Numan is one of the largest urban centers in the northwestern province of Idlib
  • The regime and its Russian ally have escalated their bombardment against the militant-dominated region since December

BEIRUT: Syrian regime forces have reached the outskirts of a key city on the edge of the country’s last rebel-held stronghold, a monitor and a pro-government newspaper said Sunday.
The mainly deserted city of Maaret Al-Numan is a strategic prize lying on the M5 linking Damascus to Syria’s second city Aleppo, a main highway coveted by the regime as it seeks to regain control of the entire country.
It is one of the largest urban centers in the beleaguered northwestern province of Idlib, the last stronghold of anti-regime forces and currently home to some three million people — half of them displaced by violence in other areas.
The regime and its Russian ally have escalated their bombardment against the militant-dominated region since December, carrying out hundreds of air strikes in southern Idlib and the west of neighboring Aleppo province.
Over the past 24 hours, government ground forces have seized seven villages on the outskirts of Maaret Al-Numan, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights war monitor said Sunday.
They have now reached “the edges of the city and are... within gunfire range of part of the highway,” it said.
Pro-regime newspaper Al-Watan reported that loyalist forces were “just around the corner” from the city, whose “doors are wide open.”
Idlib and nearby areas of Hama, Aleppo and Latakiya provinces are dominated by the Hayat Tahrir Al-Sham (HTS) militant group, led by members of the country’s former Al-Qaeda franchise.
The regime of President Bashar Assad has repeatedly vowed to reassert control over the whole of Syria, despite several cease-fire agreements.
An AFP correspondent says Maaret Al-Numan has become a ghost town.
Assad’s forces, which are also battling HTS militants in western Aleppo province, are backed on both fronts by Syrian and Russian air strikes.
The fighting has left dozens of fighters dead on both sides.
Since 1 December, some 358,000 Syrians have been displaced from their homes, the vast majority of them women and children, according to the United Nations.
A cease-fire announced by Moscow earlier this month was supposed to protect Idlib from further attacks, but the truce never took hold.
Aid agencies and relief groups have warned that further violence could fuel what may potentially become the largest wave of displacement seen during Syria’s nine-year-old civil war.
Syrian government forces now control around 70 percent of the country and Assad has repeatedly vowed to retake Idlib.