Fresh Yemen fighting kills 20: officials

Fresh clashes in two different parts of Yemen Sunday killed 14 pro-Iran rebels and six fighters loyal to the internationally recognized government, military officials said.

Among them was loyalist General Yehia al-Khayati who died at a Saudi hospital where he was taken after being wounded in clashes in Midi, a northwestern town close to the Saudi border and the Red Sea coast, an official told AFP.

Two rebel fighters were also killed in those clashes, the source said.

Further south on the outskirts of the oil-rich Usailan district of Shabwa province, rebel forces attacked loyalist positions sparking clashes that killed 12 insurgents and five pro-government soldiers, another military source said.

Yemen has been rocked by war since the Houthi rebels and their allies expanded from their northern historic strongholds seizing the capital Sanaa and other parts of the country.

The conflict escalated when Saudi Arabia formed a coalition of Arab states that have been bombing rebel positions since March 2015 in support of Yemen's government.

Nearly 7,000 people have been killed in the war -- more than half of them civilians -- while another three million are displaced amid a spread of malnutrition and disease.

The United Nations' attempts to convince the warring parties to agree on a ceasefire and return to peace talks have so far failed.

The latest fighting comes as U.N. envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed was visiting Sanaa to discuss a roadmap for peace that has been rejected by Gulf-backed President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi, who has fled to Riyadh.

Source: National News Agency.