Shi'ite rebels have abducted 15 local aid workers while the army and the rebels clashed on Friday in northern Yemen, a government official said. According to Reuters, gunmen loyal to Abdul-Malik al-Houthi took Red Crescent doctors, nurses, officials and administrators from a refugee camp on Thursday, said Hassan al-Manna, governor of Saada province.
The Shiite rebels have displaced some 17,000 families from their homes in the northern province of Saada over the past four days, Manna conveyed, according to the Yemeni Defence Ministry website.
The kidnappings came one day after the Yemeni government set six conditions for a ceasefire to end its offensive. The al-Houthi fighters rejected Thursday's the proposal. The government also accused the rebel group of killing and torturing hundreds of civilians as well as attacking homes, schools, mosques and projects in the province. The Shiite group denies these claims.