Yemen rebels free 290 prisoners

Yemen rebels free 290 prisoners

Yemen rebels free 290 prisoners

The UN Yemen envoy, Martin Griffiths, called on all parties to meet soon to discuss prisoner exchanges.

Houthi spokesman Brigadier Gen. Yahya Saree said Houthi forces had also wrested control of 350 square kilometers (135 square miles) of land from coalition forces in what he hailed as the "biggest trap".

Iran welcomes any mediatory attempt to calm tensions with Saudi Arabia, Mousavi said, expressing hope that the Saudi side is also "ready" for alleviating tensions.

The Houthis have recently announced the capture of hundreds of Yemeni loyalist forces in an August offensive near the Saudi border, but they were not among those freed on Monday. Houthi fighters are additionally proven apparently launching assaults on coalition troops, clashes that left what seems to be corpses in Saudi navy uniforms.

CNN has not been able to verify Saree's claims or footage purporting to show droves of people apparently surrendering.

The images of the attack released by the rebels, known as Houthis, show armored vehicles with stenciled Saudi markings, arms and ammunition the rebels claim they seized. Saudi Arabia and its allies blame Iran for the attack without giving credible evidence and also threaten Iran with a military response.

A government source confirmed to AFP that 200 soldiers were killed in the fighting, but said that the number of prisoners taken was less than the Houthis claimed, estimating the number to be about 1,300 Yemeni soldiers.

That follows a shock provide on September 20 by the Houthis to halt drone and missile assaults on Saudi Arabia if the coalition stops launching airstrikes. He stated Saudi military officers and troopers had been among the many captured. He said Saudi army officers and soldiers were among the captured.

The conflict escalated the following year when Saudi Arabia and its Sunni-Arab allies launched a massive air campaign aimed at rolling back Houthi gains in Yemen and supporting the country's pro-Saudi government. The coalition additionally seeks to thwart Shiite Iran's rising regional ambition, which incorporates its alliance with the Houthis.

Most of the prisoners were taken in raids since 2014, when the rebels overran the capital, Sanaa, and much of the north, pushing out Yemen's internationally recognized government and ushering in the civil war that has killed tens of thousands of people.

The Saudi war has impacted over seven million children in Yemen who now face a serious threat of starvation, according to UNICEF figures.

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