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Yemen army takes control of pipeline area

Area was target of tribesmen attempting to blow up the pipeline

Gulf News

Sana’a: The Yemeni army has managed to control a valley used by armed tribesmen as a gathering place to launch attacks on a main oil pipeline in the province of Ma’reb, a local journalist told Gulf News.

After intensive battles with armed tribesmen that claimed the lives of at least 15 people this week, army troops drove away the tribesmen from Habab valley, Sarwah district in Mareb.

“The tribesmen fled the valley and the army is now in control of the sabotaged pipeline,” the journalist said.

Yemen ministry of defence said this week that army is determined to use force and put an end to attacks on oil pipelines.

The journalist said that the attackers are not affiliated to Al Qaida.

“One of the attackers is accused of killing a man and used attacks on the pipeline to pressure the government to pardon him from this charge.”

Since the beginning of the uprising against the former president in 2011, local tribesmen seized the opportunity of lawlessness in the district of Mareb and began attacking oil and electricity facilities.

On Thursday, a source from the ministry of oil told the website of ministry of defence that the frequent attacks on oil pipelines in Mareb province are costing Yemen economy $360 millions monthly, a great loss for a country that needs to recover from months of political instability.

The source said that the attacks have disrupted the production of 120.000 barrels of oil daily from oil fields in Mareb.

Meanwhile, police in the district of Seiyun, Hadramout province, found on Wednesday the body of a security official who was kidnapped a month ago near his house in Qaten town in the same province. Local security source told Gulf News that the body of major Nomeiri Abdu Ali, the deputy of security chief of Qaten town, was found thrown in the street of Seiyun with signs of torture on different places on the body. No one has claimed responsibly for killing the official but official figures always point at Al Qaida’s active affiliates in the area. US drones have recently carried out many air strikes against Al Qaida members in the town. Also in Hadramout, armed men on motorbike shot dead a son of an assassinated intelligence officer in Ghail Bawazer on Tuesday night. Abdu Awadh Al A’ajem, was found bleeding behind his motorbike and died in hospital. His father Awadh Al A’ajem, an intelligence officer, was also assassinated in December last year in the same area.

Police foil bid to smuggle children to Saudi Arabia.

Hajja province adjacent to Saudi Arabia police have arrested a man trying to smuggle two children out of the country to the kingdom. The two children were kept in a local children’s care units and the smuggler was referred to investigation.

Ministry of interior said that police have foiled attempts to smuggle 111 children to the kingdom this year. Yemen borders with Saudi Arabia have turned into a hub for child trafficking and smuggling African refugees who seek better life in the kingdom.