Clashes between rebels, tribesmen kill 12 in Yemen

AP News
Posted: May 30, 2014 12:33 PM

SANAA, Yemen (AP) — Clashes between Shiite rebels and tribesmen backed by national army units in Yemen have killed at least 12 people, security officials and tribal leaders said Friday.

Officials said that fighting resumed late Thursday night when Hawthi rebels attacked a checkpoint and two locations where tribesmen from the Islamist Islah Party had gathered in the city of Amran, northwest of the capital, Sanaa.

One official said the clashes killed five tribesmen and at least seven Hawiths, including one of their leaders.

That official added that army and police forces managed to drive away the Hawthis fighters.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief journalists.

The Hawthis waged a six-year insurgency in the north, which officially ended in 2010. But the group recently has clashed with Sunni ultraconservatives.

The Hawthis, who belong to the Zaydi branch of Shiite Islam, accuse the ultraconservatives of trying to spread their school of thought in their strongholds. Mediation efforts and cease-fires have failed to end the tension.