At least seven civilians were killed on Saturday in a drone airstrike in southeastern Yemen, health officials said.
A drone, which is thought to belong to the U.S., targeted a vehicle carrying seven civilians in Said district of southeastern Shabwah province.
According to local sources, six people were members of a same family.
They were targeted when they were on their way back after recovering a 14-year-old boy from the captivity of Al-Qaeda group, the sources, who asked not to be named due to restrictions on talking to the media, said.
Separately, Yemen army downed a drone belonging to Houthis in southwestern Taiz province.
According to the military sources cited by Yemeni army website 26sepnews.net, the army troops downed a drone carrying out reconnaissance activities on Jarrah Mountain in northern Taiz to locate Yemeni army positions.
Yemen’s Shabwah province is comprised of 17 districts, 15 of which are currently held by government forces while much of the province’s Bihan directorate and parts of Asilan remain under the control of the Houthis and their allies.
Yemen government bans protests in Aden ahead of separatist deadline
Yemen's internationally-recognized government said on Saturday it had banned public gatherings in Aden ahead of a deadline given by southern separatists to President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi to dismiss the cabinet.The Southern Transitional Council, comprising senior political figures allied to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), announced last Sunday it planned to oust the government of Ahmed bin Daghr over allegations of corruption and mismanagement if Hadi did not dismiss it within a week.The new crisis could jeopardize a rare opportunity offered by the death of former President Ali Abdullah Saleh last month that had given a Saudi-led coalition the chance to isolate Iran-aligned Houthi fighters and end a devastating war that began in 2015.In a statement carried by the state-run Saba news agency, the Yemeni Interior Ministry said it had "decided to ban any gatherings, sit-ins or marches in the interim capital, Aden."These actions will be considered acts that target stability and calm," the statement said, adding that all armed groups will also be banned from entering Aden.GATHERING EXPECTED ON SUNDAYResidents said they had not seen any extra security in Aden, where armed forces loyal to Hadi's government, the Southern Transitional Council and the Saudi-led coalition are all present.But witnesses said government forces were deployed on roads leading to the presidential palace in the Maasheeq area, where the government is based.Witnesses also said that thousands of people had arrived in Aden from across the former South Yemen, which merged with North Yemen in 1990, to participate in a gathering expected to be held on Sunday.Yemen has been torn by armed conflict since the Houthis captured the capital Sanaa in 2014 before they marched south towards Aden the following year in a military campaign that culminated with Hadi fleeing into exile.The Saudi-led coalition that entered the war after Hadi sought refuge in Saudi Arabia in March 2015 has helped local fighters free Aden from Houthi control and made other military gains in different parts of the country. But the Houthis continue to control most of northern Yemen, including Sanaa.The Southern Transitional Council was formed last year to push for a split between the former South Yemen and North Yemen.Southern forces have previously clashed with Hadi supporters, including members of the Islamist Islah party, over control of strategic areas, such as Aden airport and oil facilities.
Saudi-led airstrike kills seven Yemenis
Saudi-led coalition aircraft on Monday struck a building in northern Yemen that housed a clinic, killing seven people, five of them children, residents said, the latest in a series of raids that have drawn international condemnation.A spokesman for the Saudi-led coalition had no immediate comment on the attack, which residents said occurred early in the morning. The coalition says it does not target civilians in its war against the Iran-aligned Houthi group.In a separate incident on Monday in southwestern Yemen Houthi fighters killed 12 people when they fired rockets at a parade being held by special security forces, medics said.Yemen has been torn apart by nearly three years of conflict, with most of the populous north controlled by the armed Houthi group, while the south and east are run by the internationally-recognised government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, which is backed by a coalition of Arab states led by Saudi Arabia.Yemen sets first budget since 2014Yemen's Houthis fire ballistic missile toward Saudi ArabiaResidents of Sohar district, on the outskirts of the provincial capital of Saada, said warplanes had struck the building that housed a small clinic and a house. As well as the seven deaths, five people were injured, residents said."A bus that was parked here was thrown behind the house and that house was damaged by the size of the bomb," said a man who identified himself as Abu Yasser as people gathered around the destroyed building.In a separate raid in the same district on Monday two other people - a woman in her seventh month of pregnancy and her husband - were killed when a hanger and flour mill were struck by the coalition, according to the woman's brother-in-law.A coalition spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for a comment on the attack.The coalition has come under international criticism, including from the United States, following previous attacks. The coalition says its pilots take extra precautions not to hit civilian targets and investigates each report.In the incident in southwestern Yemen, Houthi fighters fired rockets on Monday at a parade by special security forces in the town of al-Maafer in southwestern Yemen, medics said. The town is near to Taiz, Yemen's third largest city which is controlled by Hadi supporters.Saudi envoy to Yemen arrives in interim capital AdenThe medics said one rocket hit the main viewing platform, killing 12 people, including two journalists covering the event, but the deputy interior minister in Hadi's government, Nasser Lakhsha, who was attending the parade, escaped unharmed.The Houthis have made no comment on the attack on Taiz.The Yemen war has caused a major humanitarian crisis, killing more than 10,000, according to U.N. data issued in 2016. It has pushed Yemen to the brink of famine and led to a cholera epidemic believed to have affected about one million people.Since the war erupted in 2015, however, little territory has changed hands between the two sides.
Yemen sets first budget since 2014
Yemen announced on Sunday its first budget since the country descended into armed conflict in 2014, in a sign the Saudi-backed government seeks to get a handle on a chaotic economy as millions face starvation.Yemen has been divided by nearly three years of civil war between the internationally recognized government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, backed by northern neighbour Saudi Arabia, and the Iran-aligned Houthis.Based in the port city of Aden, Hadi's government controls the Central Bank there but has struggled to enforce order in the southern and eastern parts of Yemen that it controls or eject the Houthis from lands they run around the capital Sanaa.The conflict has unleashed what the United Nations says is the world's worst humanitarian crisis, including one of the most deadly cholera epidemics in modern times and economic collapse, which has spread hunger.Prime Minister Ahmed bin Daghr told reporters the new budget set total expected revenues in 2018 at 978 billion rials ($2.22 billion) while spending would amount to 1.46 trillion rials ($3.32 billion)."It's an austerity budget. It includes salaries for the military and civilians in 12 provinces," bin Daghr told journalists in Aden. "Salaries in Houthi-dominated areas will be limited to the education and health sectors," he said.The government has not paid most public sector salaries in northern areas for over a year, saying the Houthis have put their fighters and appointees on wage rosters - a charge the group denies.It has also struggled to pay troops and other employees even in lands under its own control, as poor security and competing internal political agendas have marred their ability to govern.Lack of wages and soaring prices have pushed many basic commodities beyond the reach of many Yemenis.Oil revenues accounted for over two-thirds of Yemen's last budget, rolled out in Jan. 2014, but the war badly damaged the sector and analysts say exports are down by nearly a quarter.Asked how the government planned to cover the deficit or revive the oil sector to increase revenues, bin Daghr said the central bank and finance ministry were studying the issues.A $2-billion Saudi deposit into the central bank last week helped stabilize Yemen's currency, which plunged to new lows of over 500 rials to the dollar but has since recovered to around 440, still down sharply from 215 before the war.
Yemen has remained locked in a civil war since 2014, when the Shia Houthi militia group overran much of the country including capital Sanaa, forcing Yemen’s Saudi-backed government to set up an interim capital in the coastal city of Aden.
In 2015, Saudi Arabia and its Arab allies began a devastating air campaign aimed at rolling back Houthi military gains in Yemen.
According to UN figures, more than 10,000 people -- including numerous civilians -- have been killed as a direct result of the conflict.