Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 31 March 2020

Pro-government forces capture Republican Palace in Taez

Loyalists gain a strategic advantage on the eastern front of a long-running battle to control the south-western city.
An armoured vehicle used by pro-government fighters during clashes with Houthi rebels in Taez on May 19, 2017. Ahmad Al Basha / AFP
An armoured vehicle used by pro-government fighters during clashes with Houthi rebels in Taez on May 19, 2017. Ahmad Al Basha / AFP

ADEN // Pro-government Yemeni forces seized the Republican Palace in Taez from Houthi rebels on Monday, gaining a strategic advantage on the eastern front of a long-running battle to control the south-western city.

The popular resistance fighters stormed the provincial administrative complex at noon, killing dozens of rebels, said a source in the militia. Seven rebels were arrested, including child fighters.

“The Republican Palace overlooks several areas under the control of the Houthis rebels, so its capture is a major step towards the liberation of Al Hawban and other areas in the eastern front,” the source said.

“The pro-government forces have tried more than once to liberate the palace but they could not capture it,” he said.

Fighting continued around the palace as pro-government forces tried to drive the rebels back to prevent a return attack, he said. They were also sweeping the palace for landmines planted by the Houthis.

Col Abdubasset Al Bahr, a leader of the pro-government forces in Taez, said a total of 78 Houthi rebels had been killed in the fighting on Monday.

Pro-government forces have been closing in on the Republican Palace since last week. Three journalists were killed by rebel shelling on Friday as they covered the advance.

foreign.desk@thenational.ae

Updated: May 29, 2017 04:00 AM

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