SANAA, Yemen (AP) — A suspected airstrike by the Saudi-led coalition fighting Shiite rebels in Yemen killed at least 26 people and wounded nine others in the country's north, a Yemeni health official said Wednesday.
Abdellah al-Ezi, head of the health office of the northern province of Saada, said the airstrike struck a small hotel in a market in the province, which lies on the border with Saudi Arabia. Saada is a stronghold of Iran-backed Shiite rebels known as Houthis.
The spokesman for the Saudi-led coalition did not immediately respond to an Associated Press call for comment on the airstrike.
International rights groups have accused the coalition of bombing civilian gatherings, markets, hospitals and residential areas across Yemen since the beginning of its air campaign against the Houthis in March 2015. The coalition aims to reinstate the internationally recognized government of Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi.
Fierce battles between Hadi's forces and the rebel forces have taken place over the past two days east of the capital, Sanaa, and other areas close to the Saudi border, leaving more than 100 killed on both sides.
Security officials from Hadi's forces say their troops made advances in several areas in Sanaa, which was seized by Houthis in September 2014, forcing Hadi to flee first to the southern port city of Aden and later to Saudi Arabia. Aden is currently the seat of Hadi's government. Houthis, however, say their forces are still in control of their positions.
In the southwestern city of Taiz, more than 80 were killed on both sides in fighting between Houthis and forces allied with Hadi over the past two days, the officials also said, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media.
The stalemated war has killed more than 10,000 civilians and displaced 3 million others and pushed the Arab world's poorest country to the brink of famine.