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Yemen/ Saudi update 1/29/2017..U.S. servicemember killed, three wounded in alBayda

Sunday, January 29, 2017 17:49
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US conducts ground, air raids on civilian area

US Servicemember Killed In Yemen Raid: First Combat Death Under Trump Administration

One U.S. servicemember was killed and three were wounded in a raid against al-Qaeda militants in Yemen, the Pentagon said Sunday. It was first combat death under the administration of President Trump and, if Trump’s executive order on expanding the US military deployment in the middle east and partitioning Syria into safe zones is followed, many more are sure to follow.

The name of the servicemember killed in action is being withheld pending next of kin notification, the statement said.

According to the WSJ, the Saturday raid resulted in the deaths of 14 militant members of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, or AQAP, the principal al Qaeda franchise in Yemen, defense officials said. It also led to the capture of critical intelligence, according to U.S. Central Command, which oversees U.S. military operations in the Middle East.

Reuters added that the special forces raid was authorized by President Donald Trump and was aimed at gathering intelligence about the militant group, a U.S. military official said on Sunday. The official said American elite forces did not seize any militants or take any prisoners off-site after Saturday’s raid, which the Pentagon said killed 14 members of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula. U.S. forces carrying out the raid came under fire.

AQAP is considered one of the most deadly branches of the terror organization. The terror group has been able to get a stronger foothold in Yemen after the country descended into civil war three years ago. The U.S. has launched drone strikes against al-Qaeda militants in Yemen and has at times deployed Special Operations forces in the country in an effort to combat the militants. The U.S. military has also launched occasional ground raids in other countries, such as Libya, where al-Qaeda or militant groups have a presence.

This appeared to be the first such counter-terror ground raid conducted the Trump administration, which has pledged to take a hardline to defeat radical Islamic groups.

Another unexpected complication was that according to a Central Command statement, a U.S. military aircraft involved in the raid experienced a “hard landing” and had to be destroyed to avoid having it fall into enemy hands. The incident resulted in additional injuries.

“This is one in a series of aggressive moves against terrorist planners in Yemen and worldwide,” the statement said. “Similar operations have produced intelligence on al-Qaeda logistics, recruiting and financing efforts.”

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of one of our elite servicemembers,” Gen. Joseph Votel, the commander of Central Command, said in a statement. “The sacrifices are very profound in our fight against terrorists who threaten innocent peoples across the globe.” Officials: US service member killed in Yemen raid

Yemen: US Paratroopers Raid Bayda Province, Kill Several Civilians

A number of US commandos parachuted in the Yemeni province of Bayda, where they raided a village and killed a number of 40 people, including several civilians. The US paratroopers in four planes landed in Bayda’s Qifah region in two phases on Sunday. Two years ago, US troopers conducted a similar operation in Yemen’s Hadhramaut Province to allegedly save an American reporter who was held captive by al-Qaeda. However, the operation was unsuccessful and left the correspondent dead.

Separately on Sunday, Saudi fighter jets mistakenly bombarded positions held by Saudi-backed militias in Bayda Province. Arabic-language al-Masirah television network quoted an unnamed informed military source as saying that the Saudi warplanes had also targeted homes in Bayda’s al-Quraishyah and Sharyah neighborhoods.

The Saudi war on Yemen, which local sources say has killed at least 13,100 people, was launched in an unsuccessful attempt to reinstate a former government allied to Saudi Arabia. The Saudi war has also taken a heavy toll on the country’s facilities and infrastructure, destroying many hospitals, schools and factories.

At Least 16 Civilians Killed in First US Raid on Yemen under Trump

The first US military action in Yemen under President Donald Trump killed almost 16 civilians in the war-torn country as alleged al-Qaeda militants were targeted in a heliborne raid. A local official said the US raid in Yemen killed 16 civilians on Sunday while it also allegedly resulted in the deaths of 41 suspected al-Qaeda militants, in what would be Washington’s first military action in the country under President Donald Trump, New Arab reported.

Eight women and eight children were among those killed in the raid in Yakla district, in the Central province of Baida, said the provincial official, who did not want to be named, and tribal sources.

The provincial official said Apache helicopters also struck a school, a mosque and a medical facility during the attack.

Other sources spoke of US commandos taking part in the operation, but it was not possible to verify the information. Some reports also said a number of US military personnel were killed or injured in course of the attack.

The military operation is the first to be attributed to the United States in Yemen since Trump took office on 20 January.

Clashes On Yemen West Coast Kill More Than 100 People

Over 50 Saudi-Backed Militias Killed in Yemeni Forces’ Offensives in Ta’iz

The Yemeni army and popular forces continued their advances against the Saudi-backed militants in Ta’iz province, inflicting major losses on them. “Over 50 Saudi-hired mercenaries, including some from Sudan, were killed in clashes with the Yemeni forces in the coastal city of al-Mukha in Ta’iz province,” a Yemeni security source said. “Most of the Riyadh-backed militias were from Abyan and Dhale provinces,” the source added. He went on to say that two military planes carrying a large number of Sudanese mercenaries had landed in Aden airport on Friday night. “Most of the Sudanese mercenaries have been killed in clashes with the Yemeni forces in Dhubab and al-Mukha warfronts over the past two days,” the security source added.

In a relevant development on Saturday, the Yemeni army and popular forces foiled an attempt by the Saudi army troops to penetrate into several regions in Ta’iz province. The Saudi troops were trying to pave their way into al-Jadid, Al-Kadaheh and al-al-Khazra regions in Ta’iz, but they were pushed back from their positions before they could take any meaningful action. Several Saudi troops were killed and many more were wounded in their failed attempt to capture the new regions in Ta’iz province.

Yemen. 27.01.2017. Houthis fired missiles at Saudi Bin Alin camp in the province of Najran, Saudi Arabia.

Yemen. Houthis are fighting with Saudi mercenaries in the area Khaataba the province of al-Dali.


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