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Arab troops deploy in central Yemen province

Arab troops from Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Qatar have been deployed in the central Yemeni province of Marib

Published: Updated:

Arab troops from Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Qatar are deployed in the central Yemeni province of Marib, Al Arabiya News Channel’s correspondent reported Tuesday, signaling the Saudi-led coalition’s resolve to crush the Iranian-backed Houthi militia group.

Marib is sandwiched between the Houthi hometown, Saada, and the capital, Sanaa, which the militias seized last year. The province also produces oil and gas, and generates electrical power to supply large parts of the country.

The correspondent also reported that Sudanese troops are imminently expected to enter Yemen, with information saying around 6,000 of them are readied to be deployed.

The news comes after Houthis and their allies in Yemen’s army fired a Soviet-era ballistic missile at an army base in Marib on Friday, killing at least 60 Gulf Arab soldiers on Friday.

Reports also indicate that Kuwaiti and Egyptian forces are on their way to back the coalition against the Houthis in Yemen. Meanwhile, coalition sources told the pan-Arab newspaper Asharq Al-Awsat that in the coming days there will be more forces deployed in other areas in Yemen.

On Tuesday, Yemen’s neighbors ramped up air strikes on the capital Sanaa and hope to launch a decisive assault soon on the city which the militia seized last year.

Yemen’s government fled to Riyadh in late March as Houthi forces, who say they are fighting a revolution against them, closed in on their last redoubt in Aden, triggering the foreign intervention and fighting which has killed over 4,500 people.

The Arab alliance states see their campaign as a fight against creeping Iranian influence in their backyard. Loyalist Yemeni forces and Gulf soldiers took back Aden and most of Yemen’s south in July, but battle lines have barely moved since as the allied forces face stiff resistance in the Houthis’ northern redoubts.

(With Reuters)