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Arab coalition says 105 Houthis killed in Marib battle

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The Arab Coalition backing the government in Yemen said Monday 105 Houthis were killed in air strikes near the strategic city of Marib.

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The deaths are the latest among roughly 1,700 Houthis the coalition says were killed in strikes over the past two weeks around Marib, the internationally recognized government’s last bastion in oil-rich northern Yemen.

The Iran-backed Houthis rarely comment on losses, and AFP could not independently verify the toll.

“Thirteen military vehicles were destroyed and 105” insurgents were killed in strikes in the past 24 hours, the coalition said, according to the official Saudi Press Agency.

The strikes were carried out in al-Jawba, about 50 kilometers (30 miles) south of Marib, and al-Kassara, 30 kilometers to the northwest.

The coalition has reported heavy strikes around Marib in recent weeks.

In February, the Houthis began a major push to seize Marib -- the internationally recognized government’s last bastion in oil-rich northern Yemen.

They have renewed their offensive since September after a lull.

The Yemeni civil war began in 2014 when the Houthis seized the capital Sanaa, 120 kilometers west of Marib, prompting coalition forces to intervene to prop up the government the following year.

Tens of thousands of people have died and millions have been displaced, in what the United Nations has called the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.

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