Dozen Yemenis killed, scores wounded in Aden clashes

dozAt least 12 people were killed and more than 130 wounded in clashes between government forces and southern separatists in Yemen’s coastal city of Aden, according to the health ministry.

The violence broke out after separatist forces loyal to the Southern Transitional Council (STC) reportedly seized the government headquarters in Aden on Sunday.

The separatists (STC) are backed by the United Arab Emirates, a key partner in the Saudi-led coalition supporting Yemen’s government in its war since 2015 against the country’s Houthi rebels.

Nine people were in a serious condition, Saba news agency cited health ministry official Jalal Baoudah as saying on Monday.

Meanwhile, the international aid organisation Oxfam said the violence forced it to shut down its offices in Aden and the city of Taiz.

Tension has been running high in Aden since the STC called for sacking the government of Prime Minister Ahmed bin Daghr. The STC accuses the government of starving Yemenis and pushing the country to the verge of famine.

Aden serves as the temporary seat of the Saudi-backed government of President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi since Houthi rebels overran much of the country, including capital Sanaa, in 2014.

In 2015, Saudi Arabia and its Sunni-Arab allies – who accuse the Houthis of serving as an Iranian proxy – launched a massive military campaign in Yemen aimed at rolling back the Houthis’ territorial gains.