Ansarullah still in control of Hudaydah airport: Yemeni officials
Yemeni officials say the airport in the strategic port city of Hudaydah is still under the control of the Ansarullah movement, rejecting reports that the facility had fallen to the hands of Saudi-backed invading forces.
According to Press TV, Yemen's army spokesman Brigadier General Sharaf Luqman on Thursday dismissed claims that the invaders had gained ground in Hudaydah as he showed photos of enemy armored vehicles blown up in the city.
He also hailed the Yemeni fighters' achievements in the country's western coast as a "miracle."
The Yemeni fighters, Luqman said, have been fighting against Daesh and al-Qaeda militants in Hudaydah's al-Durayhimi district, and have surrounded all Saudi-backed forces and mercenaries in the al-Jah neighborhood.
The mercenaries have two choices, either to surrender or die, he pointed out.
His remarks came after Saudi commander Brigadier Abdul Salam al-Shehi claimed on Wednesday that the Hudaydah airport had been “completely cleared” and was “under control” of his forces.
Ansarullah spokesman Mohammed Abdulsalam stressed that the aggressors had been defeated in Yemen's western coast despite possessing numerous weapons and enjoying financial and media support.
He further described the invaders' battle as "a mass suicide," saying the offensive is aimed at killing Yemenis and end their sovereignty.
The Yemeni people will not give in to any pressure, Abdulsalam said, emphasizing that Ansarullah fighters had foiled the enemies' "foolish" plots with a swift attack.
Separately, Mohammad al-Bukhaiti, a top figure in the Ansarullah’s Supreme Political Council, released a video from the Hudaydah airport that purportedly showed claims of the Saudi-backed forces' presence there were false.
Yemenis down spy drone, Emirati reconnaissance plane
On Thursday, Arabic-language al-Masirah television network reported that Yemen's air defense system had shot down an enemy spy drone in the northwestern Sa'ada province.
Also on Thursday, Yemeni sources said an Emirati reconnaissance plane was shot down near Saudi Arabia's southwestern Jizan region, killing the crew.
They added that the plane was returning to its base after carrying out an aerial operation in Yemen's western coast.
The media bureau of Yemen’s Operations Command quoted Yemeni military sources as saying that the Emirati jet, which had two pilots, was brought down by Yemeni air defense system.
Backed by Saudi-led airstrikes, Emirate forces along with al-Qaeda, Takfiri terrorists and other militant groups supporting the former Yemeni President launched the Hudaydah assault on June 13 despite warnings that it would compound the impoverished nation’s humanitarian crisis.
The Ansarullah and Yemen's armed forces, however, have managed to inflict heavy losses on the invaders.