Thu Apr 14, 2016
Jordanian military forces and advisers will be replacing UAE troops fighting in the Saudi war on Yemen, following reports of serious disputes among the few “coalition” members, a report says.
Yemen’s Khabar news agency, citing informed sources, reported on Thursday that the decision had been made following a recent visit by Saudi deputy crown prince Mohammad bin Salman Al Saud to Jordan.
Prince Mohammad, who is the Saudi defense minister, met King Abdullah in the Jordanian port city of Aqaba and signed a package of agreements, including on development of military cooperation.
The report said the deployment of Jordanian forces will now be coming after the United Arab Emirates withdrew the bulk of its military force from Yemen’s Ma’rib following a series of military setbacks.
The Saudi crown prince also traveled to the UAE in an effort to mend fences after reports of significant frictions between the two allies over the war on Yemen.
Emirati authorities are reportedly angry with a Saudi decision to dismiss a former general with close ties to the UAE.
In February, the Saudi kingdom sacked Khaled Bahah and appointed Ali Mohsen Al Ahmar to lead the fight against Yemen’s Houthis.
Ahmar has been based in Saudi Arabia since the Houthis took over Sana’a in 2014.
Jordanian military forces reportedly took part in the Saudi operation in Aden last July following the flight of Saudi-backed militiamen loyal to former president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi.
Early on Thursday, Saudi military aircraft carried out a fresh round of aerial assaults against the Nihm district of Sana’a Province, though there were no immediate reports of possible casualties and the extent of damage caused.
The development came only hours after Saudi-backed militiamen fired a barrage of artillery rounds at Dhubab, Harir and al-Jumhuri districts in Yemen’s southwestern province of Ta’izz and Ghorab and al-Madaniyah neighborhoods in the provincial capital city of Ta’izz.
Saudi Arabia launched its military aggression against Yemen on March 26, 2015, in a bid to bring Hadi — who is a staunch ally of Riyadh — back to power and undermine the Houthi Ansarullah movement.
More than 9,400 people have been killed and at least 16,000 others injured since the onset of the aggression.
The Saudi strikes have also taken a heavy toll on the country’s facilities and infrastructure, destroying many hospitals, schools, and factories.