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Saudi-led coalition airstrike kills 20 prisoners in Yemen

The strikes hit a prison controlled by Shiite Houthi rebels in Yemen's al-Bayda province.

By Fred Lambert
Saudi-led coalition airstrike kills 20 prisoners in Yemen
Yemenis gather around a crater left following a reported airstrike on March 28 in the capital, Sanaa, on the third day of Saudi-led coalition airstrikes against the Houthis. A Saudi-led coalition airstrike on Sunday, reportedly killed at least 20 prisoners in a Houthi-controlled prison in Yemen's al-Bayda province. Photo by Mohammad Abdullah/UPI | License Photo

AL-BAYDA, Yemen, Oct. 11 (UPI) -- Airstrikes by the Saudi-led coalition against Yemen's Shiite Houthi rebels killed at least 20 prisoners in the country's al-Bayda province on Sunday.

Xinhua news agency, quoting witnesses and medical sources, reported the strikes hit a Houthi-controlled prison housing up to 100 detainees. At least 30 others were injured in the attacks.

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The strike coincided with multiple air raids against Houthi positions in the Yemeni capital of Sanaa.

More than 5,000 people have been killed in Yemen since March, when Saudi Arabia formed a coalition of regional allies against the Houthis. Last year the rebels stormed in from Yemen's north, seizing the capital and sending President Abdu Rabbo Mansour Hadi fleeing into exile in Riyadh.

Hadi returned to Yemen in September, setting up a temporary base in the southern port city of Aden, which allied militiamen recaptured with help from coalition ground troops -- some reportedly from the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia -- in July.

The pro-Hadi coalition has since launched attacks northward, but the Houthis still hold the capital.

On Thursday, an airstrike killed at least 30 people attending a wedding celebration in Yemen's Dhamar province, but the Saudi-led coalition denied conducting operations in the area at the time of the attack.

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Coalition officials also denied conducting a similar airstrike in September in the city of Mokha, west of Aden on the Red Sea coast. Missiles struck two tents where a man linked to the Houthi movement was celebrating his marriage, killing at least 135 people.

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