Fierce infighting resumes in Abyan province

Fierce infighting resumes in Abyan province

Fierce fighting has broken out between UAE-backed Southern Transitional Council (STC) militias and forces loyal to Hadi’s government in southern Yemen’s Abyan province, local sources reported on Sunday.

According to pro-coalition sources, fierce fighting resumed between the two sides east of Zinjibar city, and casualties have been reported.

The sources confirmed that violent explosions were heard as a result of the exchange of artillery shelling between the two sides on Sheikh Salem and al-Taryah fronts, east of Zinjibar city, the capital of the province.

Hadi’s forces in Abyan on Sunday concluded an agreement with the tribes of Lawedar district in the same province. This move means that the directorate is planned to fall into the hand of Hadi forces peacefully.

The coalition-backed forces, consisting out of Hadi loyalists and Islah Party militants have been locked in fierce battles against the UAE-backed Southern Transitional Council over the Lawdar district.

Abu Mashal al-Kazmi, director of security for Abyan, recently announced the end of his four-day visit to Lawdar district.

Al-Kazmi met with a number of sheikhs of the directorate and issued decisions to appoint security directors for several areas. He said his campaign had arrested a number of people described as “outlaws,” referring to STC elements who clashed with his forces over the past two days in the directorate.

The fall of the Lawdar directorate will add significant burdens to the STC, because of the social and political importance of the directorate.

Hadi’s announcement of the fall of Lawdar came as night-time fighting intensified with the UAE-backed militias, despite reports of Saudi pressure to cease fire in preparation for the implementation of the Riyadh Accord, particularly the military wing which provides for a reciprocal withdrawal from the fighting fronts in Abyan.