On March 18, Yemeni fighters loyal to Saudi-backed Yemeni President Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi launched a “large scale” military operation to capture the center of the al-Malagim district in the central province of al-Bayda, according to the media center of pro-Hadi forces.
The media center said that pro-Hadi fighters had captured the Sh’ab B’arf area and Jabal al-Dahr Mount during the first day of the military operation. Several Houthi fighters were reportedly killed and injured.
“The military operation is ongoing and the army [pro-Hadi] forces are moving steadily towards the center of al-Malagim district, amid a major collapse in the ranks of the militias [the Houthis],” a pro-Hadi forces commander said.
The UAE-based al-Arabiya TV reported that Saudi-led coaction warplanes had backed the offensive and had destroyed three vehicles and positions of the Houthis in the al-Malagim district.
Pro-Hadi forces launched a previous offensive in the district of al-Malagim on March 3 and captured several positions in the Ashar area, according to al-Arabiya. However, the Houthis were able to repelled the attack back then.
Local observers believe that the Houthis can repel the new attack too if the Saudi-led coalition does not provide pro-Hadi forces with the needed fire support. A mistake the coalition has made during many previous attacks.