“The US demand is roundly condemned. It exhibits Americans are in close connection with al-Qaeda and Daesh militants, who suffered heavy defeat in the al-Abdiyah district of Ma’rib province,” Mohammed Abdulsalam, Ansarullah’s spokesman, wrote in a series of posts on his Twitter page on Saturday night.
“As Yemeni forces are closing in on last bastions of Saudi-led militia forces as well as Daesh and al-Qaeda operatives, Americans are crying foul and claiming they seek peace. This is while they are the enemy of peace and tranquility in Yemen and worldwide.”
The remarks came shortly after US State Department spokesman Ned Price issued a statement, calling on Yemeni army soldiers and fighters from allied Popular Committees to stop their offensive in Ma’rib province, and to ensure the opening of a safe passage for what Washington claimed to be “life-saving aid and the wounded.”
‘Hundreds of pro-Hadi militants killed on Mar’ib outskirts’
Yemeni military sources said hundreds of Saudi-sponsored militants loyal to former president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi have been killed and wounded over the past few days as Yemeni army troops and their allies continue to make significant advances in Ma’rib province.
The sources told Yemen News Portal website that the Saudi mercenaries sustained heavy losses during clashes with Yemeni army forces and Popular Committees fighters on the outskirts of the provincial capital city of Ma’rib.
They added that a number of high-profile militant commanders, including Awad Nakir, the leader of the al-Qaeda-affiliated Islah party in the al-Abdiyah district, were among the latest casualties.
Saudi Arabia, backed by the US and regional allies, launched the war on Yemen in March 2015, with the goal of bringing the government of former Yemeni president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi back to power and crushing popular Ansarullah resistance movement.
The war has left hundreds of thousands of Yemenis dead, and displaced millions more. It has also destroyed Yemen’s infrastructure and spread famine and infectious diseases.
Yemeni armed forces and allied Popular Committees, however, have grown steadily in strength against the Saudi-led invaders, and left Riyadh and its allies bogged down in the country.
On Saturday, the World Food Programme (WFP) called for immediate action by the international community to end hunger in Yemen.