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Yemeni army claims military gains in Marib

Yemeni tribesmen hold positions during fighting against the Houthis in Marib city on 27 June 2016 [ABDULLAH AL-QADRY/AFP/Getty Images]
Yemeni tribesmen hold positions during fighting against the Houthis in Marib city on 27 June 2016 [ABDULLAH AL-QADRY/AFP/Getty Images]

The Yemeni army, on Tuesday, claimed military gains in the central province of Marib, amid fighting with Houthi rebels, Anadolu News Agency reports.

A military statement said that government forces seized large areas in Harib district, south of Marib.

The statement said Houthi rebels suffered "heavy losses", without giving any further details.

There was no comment from the Houthi group on the claim.

Local media earlier said that the Yemeni army launched a major military operation into rebel-held Harib district, which is adjacent to the Shabwa province.

The Yemeni army said, Monday, that its forces had liberated Shabwa province from Houthi rebels.

READ: Yemen's Houthis accuse Saudi-led coalition of seizing fuel vessel

For months, Iranian-aligned Houthi rebels have stepped up attacks to take control of the oil-rich Marib province, one of the most important strongholds of the legitimate government and home to the headquarters of Yemen's Defence Ministry.

Yemen has been engulfed by violence and instability since 2014, when the Iran-aligned Houthi rebels captured much of the country, including the capital, Sana'a.

A Saudi-led coalition aimed at reinstating the Yemeni government has worsened the situation, causing one of the world's worst man-made humanitarian crises, with nearly 80 per cent, or about 30 million people, needing humanitarian assistance and protection and more than 13 million in danger of starvation, according to UN estimates.

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