U.S. Air Force bombs tribal positions at Radaa in Yemen
At least ten people were killed in an American drone raid on positions assumed to belong to Sunnis believed to be connected with Al-Qaeda organisation in the city of Radaa in central Yemen.
Tribal sources have informed Arabi21 that “an American drone on Friday raided the positions belonging to fighters from Radaa tribes while battles raged with the Houthis. The raid resulted in killing 10 tribal armed men in Isbil and Al-Manasih areas within Radaa to the south of Sanaa.”
According to the same sources, the tribes managed to resume clashes with the Houthis and succeeded in seizing two military units and a number of light and medium weapons in an armed ambush set up for the Houthi fighters near Isbil Mountain, close to the region of Anas east of Al-Baydaa.
A Facebook page called “Radaa News” reported that the tribal fighters from the city of Radaa seized military equipment from the Houthis in the mountains of Isbil after a successful ambush. The tribesmen seized 12 medium 7/12 calibre weapons, 7 armoured vehicles, 6 mortars, 22 Bika pieces, and more than 100 light weapons and captured 48 Houthis.
These developments came as battles raged between the Houthis and Sunni tribes supported by Al-Qaeda militants in the aftermath of the advances made by the tribes in more than one front where fierce confrontations raged between them during the past two days.
Units from the former Republic Guards, which are loyal to former president Ali Saleh, took part in the battles on Friday fighting against the Radaa tribes. These units shelled with artillery the mountains of Isbil and Al-Mansih along the borders of Anas, which is part of Dhamar Province to the south of the capital Sanaa.
A spokesman for the Houthis, Muhammad Abd Al-Salam, appeal several days ago to the agencies of the central government in the capital Sanaa to cooperate with the group’s armed men in “the war against terrorism” in Radaa, which is part of Al-Bydaa Province in Central Yemen.
Armed men riding on motorbikes on Friday attacked Houthi checkpoints in the Sheraton area of Sanaa. Three Houthis were killed and several others were wounded.
Houthi leader Muhammad Al-Qahoum told Arabi21 that Houthi fighters made progress in the field in the city of Radaa and that positions were seized where what he called as the Takfiris were stationed in Al-Manasih within the city.
Al-Qahoum denounced the American drone intervention in the battles that rage between Sunni fighters supporters by fighters from Al-Qaeda affiliated Ansar Al-Shar’iah “even if they were in favour of our folks”. He called the American air raids “criminal”.
He added that their “fighting in the city of Radaa, 130 km to the south of Sanaa, comes within the context of self defence”, as he put it.
Since the Houthis seized the capital Sanaa on 21 September, the group is still engaged in violent battles with Sunni tribes in the provinces of Al-Baydaa and Ibb in central Yemen. Scores of people were killed or wounded on both sides.
Source: Sunday, 26 October 2014 (middleeastmonitor.com)