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As of February 18, the Houthis (Ansar Allah) continue to defend their positions in different parts of Yemen from the Saudi-led coalition and its proxies with much success.
In the central province of Ma’rib, Saudi-led coalition proxies are yet to make any new gains on the ground.
As of February 14, the pro-Saudi wing of the Yemeni Armed Forces (YAF) was still clashing with the Houthis near the al-Balaq al-Sharqi mount which is located to the south of Ma’rib city. On February 15, there was an advance attempt by the YAF. However, no gains were reported.
The situation was not much different in the northern province of Saada, the heartland of the Houthis.
On February 17, the Saudi-backed Happy Yemen Brigades, who have been leading the coalition’s ground operations in Saada, pushed forward with full force in the area of Alrizamat. However, only three minor positions, Sharqan, Tabab al-Azaby and al-Hudaybi, were captured from the Houthis.
Meanwhile, in the northwestern province of Hajjah the battle between the Houthis and the Saudi-led coalition proxies in the district of Harad continues to heat up.
The Houthis, who are still in control of the Harad district center, have been intensifying their attacks on coalition proxies.
On February 14, a heavy artillery rocket that was allegedly launched by the Houthis from Harad hit a civilian house in the nearby district of Hayran. Two civilians were killed and two others were wounded as a result of the attack.
On February 15, the Houthis launched three ballistic missiles at different areas held by the YAF’s 5th Military District in Harad. No civilian casualties were reported this time.
On the same day, the 5th Military District, which has been leading the coalition’s ground operations in Harad, shot down ten drones which were allegedly launched by Houthis over different parts of the district.
The Houthis showed fierce resistance on several fronts despite facing much pressure from the Saudi-led coalition’s air power. Between February 14 and 17, coalition warplanes carried out more than 50 airstrikes on Yemen. The airstrikes targeted the Houthi-held capital, Sanaa, as well as areas held by the group in the provinces of Ma’rib and Hajjah.
The Houthis will likely continue to hold onto their positions in Ma’rib, Saada and Hajjah. Soon, the Saudi-led coalition and its proxies may attempt to open another front in Yemen to distract the group. The coalition may also escalate its aerial campaign on the Yemeni areas held by the group.