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Operation Decisive Storm: Fresh airstrike hits military base in Yemen
Saturday March 28, 2015 9:35 AM, IANS

The Saudi-led Arab forces conducted fresh air strikes targeting the largest military base in Yemen's capital Sanaa on Friday evening as the coalition's aerial campaign against the shiite Houthi terrorists entered the third day, witnesses said.

Warplanes raided the largest military base on the mountain of Nokum in eastern Sanaa and also several other targets in that area, Xinhua reported.

The Saudi-led Arab forces carried out a third day of airstrikes which are repelled by intensified anti-aircraft gunfire of the Shiite Houthi terrorists that controls Sanaa. Huge explosions could be heard across the city while the Houthi artillery lighted up the sky. There is no immediate report of casualties yet.

During the seven-hour airstrikes overnight Thursday, the coalition forces hit targets in Sanaa, the southern province of Taiz and the Houthi stronghold of Saada province that borders Saudi Arabia in the north.

A Houthi member told Xinhua that the strikes in Saada killed seven people and injured 14 others, which brings the death toll in Yemen to 32 while at leat 64 were injured since the airstrikes commenced late on Wednesday night.

The source declined to expose the casualties in Sanaa where three military camps were targeted last night.

Former President Ali Abdullah Saleh called for a cease-fire after his forces were targeted by the airstrikes.

In the country's southern regions, the Houthi fighters are still battling pro-Hadi tribal militias in the Aden city.

Hadi fled to Aden, the country's second biggest city in south of Lahj province, in late February after weeks of house arrest by the Houthi group in the capital Sanaa, and stepped up confrontations with the Houthis who took over control of the capital last September.

The embattled president, who is now in Egypt's Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, is expected to attend the Arab League Summit to be held during this weekend.

Forces loyal to Hadi imposed on Friday a curfew on the southern port city of Aden, where dozens of people were killed in the battle in the past few days.

According to a statement issued by pro-Hadi forces "the curfew will be from 19:00 (1600 GMT) to 7:00 (0400 GMT) from Friday night. "

"We urge the citizens to remain calm and stay at their homes as the street fighting continues," the statement said.

The Aden city has been simmering with tensions and armed confrontations for more than three weeks.

A government official with the health ministry department in Aden told Xinhua on Friday "we received death tolls from the public hospitals in Aden. At least 26 civilians were killed and dozens of others injured in random shootings and shelling."

Thousands of families in Aden have fled the battles to rural areas outside the city.
On Friday night, a local resident said that four huge explosions rocked the Dar Saad district, Aden's main entrance, and were followed by heavy gunfire.

Meanwhile, dozens of pro-Hadi tribal militias ambushed a convoy of the Shiite Houthi group in Saber district in Lahj province, about 30 km away from Aden.

"About 18 people were killed in the ambush, most of them Houthi gunmen," a military official said, adding that fighting between the two warring rivals continues near Aden city.

In Lahj province, the Saudi-led coalition forces launched Friday two rounds of pre-dawn air strikes and bombed the strategic Anad military air base that was controlled by the Shiite Houthi group three days ago.

An air force official confirmed to Xinhua "a number of military fighter jets were destroyed and all the buildings inside the base were set on fire."

In Yemen's southern province of Taiz, thousands of anti-Houthi protesters organized massive rallies after Friday prayers in support of the air strikes against the Houthis and their allies in Sanaa.



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