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article imageSaudi-led forces retake provincial capital of province in Yemen

By Ken Hanly     Aug 26, 2019 in World
The internationally recognized Yemen government backed by Saudi Arabia has reportedly retaken a rebel-held camp in the capital city of Shabwa province. Though reports say the camp was retaken on Saturday, there were still signs of fighting on Sunday
The ABC news account
ABC news reports much more than one camp being recaptured: "Forces loyal to Yemen's internationally recognized government on Saturday took control of a headquarters and at least three military camps from a separatist militia backed by the United Arab Emirates in and outside a key southern city, military officials and the government said.The development came a day after government forces of Saudi-backed President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi took full control of the city of Ataq, the capital of oil-rich Shabwa province, following clashes with a UAE-trained militia known as the Elite Force."
Nine combatants were killed all told, and another 13 wounded according to reports.
UAE with separatists have seized Aden and surrounding territory
UAE supported forces together with the separatist Southern Transitional Council (STC) had taken over substantial territory in several different provinces. Shabwa has been the most recent target. It appears that Saudi-led forces loyal to the government of Mansur Hadi are launching a counter attack.
Although the STC and UAE forces still control Aden, they have returned the presidential palace and also some government buildings to the Saudi-controlled forces. President Hadi is not in Yemen because of the lack of security but is in exile in Saudi Arabia. The STC controls not only Aden the southern capital but also the neighboring province of Abyan, plus some further territory in Shabwa. The STC hopes to gain control of all southern Yemen and eventually declare Southern Yemen to be a separate country as it was some time ago.
Both the UAE, STC, and Saudi Arabia with its allies are joined together in fighting the Houthis who control much of the north including the capital Sanaa. The Houthis are supported by Iran. However the Saudis want to create a unified Yemen whereas the separatists want one state in the north and another in the south.
The battle between Saudi-backed and UAE forces
The fighting between the two erstwhile allies broke out during a funeral earlier this month for STC and UAE members killed in a rocket attack by the Houthis but mourners turned against guards of presidential palace: "During the funeral, the mourners chanted slogans against the self-proclaimed Hadi administration and exchanged gunfire with the guards at the presidential palace in Aden — where Hadi was supposed to be based but which remains largely empty as the ex-president lives in Riyadh."
At the time Hani Bin Braik a separatist leader and former cabinet minister called for the overthrow of the Hadi government. The infighting cast doubt on whether the two parties can form a united front against the Houthis who appear to be holding their own. The civil war with the Saudis attempting to restore the former Hadi government has killed tens of thousands of people and created a huge humanitarian disaster with many residents displaced and facing starvation..
More about STC, Yemen civil war, Ataq
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