Separatists surrounded two government military bases in Yemen’s south and demanded elements inside surrender, sources on both sides said yesterday, ten days after the secessionists seized defacto capital Aden.
The flare-up, in Abyan province, comes after the separatist Southern Transitional Council (STC) partially withdrew from key sites it occupied in Aden, and the Saudi-led military coalition -- which backs the government -- said Riyadh and Abu Dhabi had “succeeded in calming the situation”.
But on Tuesday fighters from the so-called Security Belt Forces surrounded a military camp in Zinjibar, the capital of Abyan, and another at Al-Kawd, according to government sources.
Yemeni Information Minister Moammer al-Eryani said the Zinjibar base had been surrounded, noting that it was a special forces camp.
“The Security Belt Forces... are demanding the (government) troops surrender or they will storm the camp,” he said, referring to a United Arab Emirates trained force that is aligned with the separatist STC.
STC spokesman Nizar Haitham confirmed to AFP that the two pro-government camps were surrounded by separatist troops.
The Security Belt Forces are “pursuing (agents) working to destabilise security and stability and hiding in the camps belonging to the legitimate government”, he told AFP.