Al-Qaeda militants begin to retreat from southern Yemen

Published October 28th, 2014 - 05:52 GMT

Al-Qaeda-linked militants in Yemen confirm they have retreated from their strongholds in the al-Manasseh area of the southern province of al-Bayda.

In a statement on Monday, al-Qaeda affiliate Ansar al-Sharia said that the Houthi movement’s Ansarullah fighters drove them out after a series of battles.

According to the statement, all of the other local wings of al-Qaeda also withdrew from the region.

The statement was issued after locals reported that they had successfully flushed the militants out of al-Bayda province.

Security officials said Monday that at least 250 people have been killed in clashes between al-Qaeda-linked militants and Houthi fighters in al-Bayda over the past three days.

According to the latest reports, the Ansarullah fighters have secured parts of the town of Rada' by forcing the extremist militants out.

The fighters also drove off the militants from the southwestern Yemeni town of Yarim in the Ibb province over the weekend.

In September, Ansarullah revolutionary fighters gained control over the capital Sana’a following a four-day battle with army forces loyal to General Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar, the half-brother of the former Yemeni dictator, Ali Abdullah Saleh.

Ansarullah fighters control the cities of Sana'a, Ibb, Dhamar and the major port city of Hodeidah. They also secured their presence in the Tawwal border crossing and Wagha region in Hajjah province on October 18.

The Ansarullah movement played a major role in the popular uprising that forced Saleh to step down after more than 33 years in power.

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