Al Mukalla: The Chief of Staff of Yemen’s army on Friday paid a visit to the newly-liberated Fardhat Nehim military camp, a signal that the government forces are taking the offensive in the current military operations in Sana’a province.

Even as his forces were trading mortar shells with Al Houthi militants not far from the area, Major General Mohammad Al Magadeshi, toured the ravaged camp and urged the fighters to keep their morale high as they advance toward Al Houthi-controlled Sana’a local media reports said.

Army officials say that pro-government forces, which include army troops and tribal fighters, are now battling Al Houthis in Nagel Bin Gaylan and Beran regions in Nehim district.

Backed by intensive air strikes from the Saudi-led coalition warplanes, anti-Al Houthis forces on Thursday make a major breakthrough in the battles by pushing the rebels out of the strategic camp that overlooks the main road that connects Sana’a with Marib.

Similarly, Mohsen Ali Khasrouf, the chief of Yemen’s Armed Forces Moral Guidance Department, said on Saturday that the national army and resistance fighters have liberated the eastern gate of the capital as powerful tribes from Bani Hareth, Arhab and Bani Housheh regions threw their weight behind the government of President Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi. Khasrouf, also a prominent military analyst, said on his Facebook page on Saturday that setbacks for Al Houthis in Hajja’s Medi and Hodeida along with the support of some republican guard officers to the government forces suggest that defeat of “the coup forces” is imminent.

In the besieged city of Taiz, south Yemen, indiscriminate and intensive shelling from the outskirts by Al Houthis killed a civilian and injured nine, including a family of four on Saturday morning, said Zakaria Al Shara’abi, a pro-government journalist who logs civilian deaths.

Also, a local army officer loyal to the government, said on Friday that they drove the rebels out of some areas in the city. Brigadier General Adnan Al Hamadi, the commander of 35 Brigade in Taiz, told Al Masdar Online, an independent news site, that his forces recaptured some areas in Al Mesrakh district, including Hawjala, Gehaf, Afndat and the football stadium.

In Medi, Hajja province, the same news site reported on Saturday that government forces killed at least 20 Al Houthis fighters as they were mounting a counterattack to seize control of areas in the city.