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Gunmen prevent Saudi forces from reaching Oman

August 24, 2020 at 1:22 pm

Tribesmen loyal to the Houthi group chant slogans during an armed tribal gathering in Sana’a, Yemen, on 8 July 2020 [Mohammed Hamoud/Getty Images]

Tribal militants in Yemen’s eastern governorate of Al-Mahra have prevented Saudi forces from reaching a border crossing port with the Sultanate of Oman.

Local sources were quoted as saying that the Saudi forces were heading from Al-Ghaydah International Airport in Al-Mahra to the Shahn border crossing Oman.

Anadolu Agency said on Saturday that a number of tribal militants, opposing the Saudi military presence in Al-Mahra, had intercepted Saudi forces before their arrival at the Shahn port, adding that they had forced them to return to their camp in the Hat district.

The sources pointed out that the Saudi forces had moved towards the port under the pretext of “delivering a thermal inspection device that would be installed at the port as part of anti-smuggling measures.”

The Yemeni conflict between the internationally-recognised government and Iran-backed Houthis has killed more than 100,000 people since the Saudi-led alliance intervened in Yemen in March 2015 shortly after the Houthis ousted the Saudi-backed government from power in the capital Sanaa. The conflict is largely seen regionally as a proxy war between Saudi and Iran. The Houthis say they are fighting a corrupt system.

READ: Yemen government denounces UN envoy indifference to Houthi crimes