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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 September 2018

Yemen: Seven killed by Houthi missile in Marib

Another 25 wounded in strike on crowded Al Mujama neighbourhood

Tribesmen inspect fragments of a Houthi ballistic missile at a farm after it was intercepted by the Saudi-led coalition's air defence forces in Marib, Yemen on February 23, 2018. Ali Owidha / Reuters
Tribesmen inspect fragments of a Houthi ballistic missile at a farm after it was intercepted by the Saudi-led coalition's air defence forces in Marib, Yemen on February 23, 2018. Ali Owidha / Reuters

At least seven people, including children, were killed and 25 wounded by a Houthi missile fired at the Yemeni city of Marib on Tuesday.

“The Houthis targeted the neighbourhood of Al Mujama near the Athban mosque in the centre of the city with a Katyusha missile in the early hours of Tuesday, killing seven civilians and wounding at least 25, which means the number of victims may rise,” Khalil Al Zikri, from the Yemen army’s moral guidance department, told The National.

“The Al Mujama neighbourhood is always crowded because it has many stores and a public market, and the rebels meant to target the area to kill innocent people, no more.”

Saudi-owned Al Arabiya television reported earlier that a Houthi Katyusha missile targeted a residential neighbourhood in city centre of Marib, which falls under the control of the internationally-recognised government of President Abdrabu Mansur Hadi.

An Arab coalition, which is led by Saudi Arabia and includes the UAE, intervened in the Yemen war in 2015 to battle the Iran-backed Houthi rebels at the request of Mr Hadi’s government.

Coalition spokesman Col Turki Al Malki said on Monday that more than 85 per cent of Yemen has been recaptured from the Houthi rebels, as Yemeni forces — supported by the Arab alliance — are making progress on all battlefronts.

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He also said that the Houthi rebels were behind the explosion that damaged a Turkish vessel in Yemen's Saleef port, which is just north of the Houthi-controlled port of Hodeidah on the Red Sea.

"After investigation, there was no evidence of the ship carrying explosives but was coming from Russia carrying wheat," said Col Al Malki. He added that the ship was subject to a missile attack by the Houthis in Hodeidah.

The spokesman also said that the rebels have been blocking and seizing relief aid intended for the Yemeni people during the month of Ramadan and that they continue to use civilians as human shields on the battlefronts.

Meanwhile, the Yemeni army has cut off the supply route of the Houthis between Al Waziya and Kahboob and advanced to recapture the Al Ahyoouk area west of Taez, an army spokesman told The National.

In the northern region of the country, the army on Monday seized the strategic mountain of Al Kahera in Al Jawf province, reported the military-run 26 September news site.

According to the UN, at least 10,000 people have died in the three-year-old war, and three out of four Yemenis — 22 million civilians — need relief aid.

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