On March 3, forces loyal to Saudi-backed Yemeni president Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi imposed full control of the district of Nati’s in the central province of al-Bayda after they had captured the strategic mountain chain of al-Dahir, according to the UAE-based al-Arabiya TV.
Al-Arabia added that pro-Hadi forces had begun their offensive operations in the district of al-Malagim, located south of the Nati’ district, and captured several positions in the Ashar area.
During their advance, pro-Hadi fighters killed more than 30 Houthi fighters and captured 12 others, according to Yemeni sources. Saudi-led coalition warplanes backed the pro-Hadi forces attack in the Nati’ district and destroyed three positions and vehicles belonging to the Houthis.
In a related development, commander of the reserve forces in the Yemeni army, Major General Samir Haj, announced that pro-Hadi forces had captured several new positions in the Arhab district of the central province of Sanaa.
Maj. Gen. Haj claimed that pro-Hadi forces are currently only “one step away” from imposing their control of the Sanaa airport, north of the Yemeni capital. However, in reality pro-Hadi forces are located within more than 40km northeast of the airport.
Pro-Hadi forces have been trying to capture the Sanaa airport since the outbreak of the Yemeni war in 2015. However, even with the support of the Saudi-led collation, pro-Hadi forces have failed to make any serious gains in Arhab.