October 21, 2009

Yemeni fighters capture key government positions

Press TV - October 21, 2009 16:02:11 GMT

As Yemen's military offensive against Houthi fighters in the north enters its tenth week, Shia fighters say they have seized a number of key government positions in Saada province.

The Houthis said on Wednesday that they took control of an airport and a strategic military base in Razeh district near the Saudi border, after hours of heavy clashes.

The fighters also seized a military center and a government building in the region.

According to the office of Abdel-Malik al-Houthi, who heads the Shia group, Yemeni troops were forced to retreat from their positions, leaving behind a large haul of weapons, ammunition and military equipment.

While the Ministry of Defense claims to have repelled the rebels at Razeh, a government source confirmed that Razeh's airport had been lost to the rebels.

The Houthis have also claimed to have forced government troops out of a residential area around Saada city. The fighters say the troops had entered the area over night in an attempt to take control of the city's southern entry point.

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