Houthis fire on protesters in Yemen’s Taizz

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Shiite Houthi militants on Saturday opened fire to disperse an anti-Houthi protest in Yemen’s central city of Taizz, eyewitnesses have said.

Houthi militants sporting both military and civilian attire opened fire on a mass protest near a Special Forces encampment in Taizz, eyewitnesses told The Anadolu Agency.

It remains unclear whether there have been any casualties.

Despite the gunfire, protesters continued their rally to demand the departure of Houthis from the security encampment.

Protesters roamed several streets in the city before reaching the Special Forces encampment to demand the Houthis’ departure.

On Friday, pro-Houthi forces entered Taizz city without any resistance and settled in the encampment.

The Houthis emerged as a formidable political and military force in Yemen after assuming control of Sanaa last September before moving on to establish control over other parts of the country.

The rise of the Houthis has pitted the Shiite group against local Sunni tribes and Al-Qaeda, the latter of which is said to still be active in the country.

Fractious Yemen has remained in the throes of turmoil since autocratic President Ali Abdullah Saleh stepped down in 2012 following a months-long popular uprising against his 33-year rule. –
SANAA (AA)

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