Yemen’s Houthi militia close in on president’s Aden base

Reuters: Houthi militia forces in Yemen backed by allied army units seized an air base on Wednesday and appeared poised to capture the southern port of Aden from defenders loyal to President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, local residents said.

After taking al-Anad air base, the Houthis and their military allies, supported by heavy armor, advanced to within 20 km (12 miles) of Aden, where Hadi has been holed up since fleeing the Houthi-controled capital Sanaa last month.

Soldiers at Aden’s Jabal al-Hadeed barracks fired into the air to prevent residents from entering the base and arming themselves, witnesses said, suggesting that Hadi’s control over the city was fraying.

The Wall Street Journal reports: Western-backed President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi has fled the port of Aden on a boat after Houthi militants drew closer to seizing the southern city where he had been holed up amid an intensifying assault, local officials said Wednesday.

A convoy of Saudi Arabian diplomatic officials helped Mr. Hadi escape, according to local officials and Houthi spokesman Mohammed Al Bukhaiti.

The Shiite-linked Houthi militant group recently seized control of Yemen’s capital, San’a, and forced Mr. Hadi from power. He fled the capital to Aden, where he enjoys support from local security forces. [Continue reading…]

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