A wounded woman lies in a hospital bed, after being wounded following a rocket attack by Iran-backed Al Houthi militants on a busy market in the central city of Taiz. The market was filled with residents shopping in preparation for Ramadan. Image Credit: AFP

Cairo: A rocket fired by Iran-backed Al Houthi forces or allied troops killed at least six civilians when it landed in a crowded market in the southwestern city of Taiz on Friday, medics said.

The medics said children were among the victims of the Katuysha rocket, which was fired from an area controlled by Al Houthis and troops loyal to former President Ali Abdullah Saleh.

Yemeni forces broke a siege imposed by Al Houthis on Taiz — Yemen’s third-largest city and a cultural centre — in heavy fighting in March.

But neither side has been able to extend control over the entire city.

The medics said 18 people were wounded as well as the six killed in the attack, which took place days before the start of Ramadan.

Ezz Al Deen Al Asbahi, human rights minister for the internationally recognised government based in Aden, put the death toll at nine civilians and said 26 other people were wounded.

“The rocketing of Taiz by Al Houthis and Saleh is a proof that the killers are destroying any hope of peace,” Al Asbahi said in a statement.

A Saudi-led alliance intervened in the Yemen conflict in March last year to try to restore Hadi to power after Al Houthi militants had taken over the capital Sana’a advanced on his temporary headquarters in Aden, forcing him to flee to Saudi Arabia.

A shaky truce between the Iran-allied Al Houthis and Hadi loyalists has repeatedly been violated by Al Houthis since it took hold in April before UN-sponsored peace talks in Kuwait.

The war that has killed more than 6,200 people and displaced more than 2.5 million.