"In the past two months, the Shiite rebels took over several towns and cities in the country's northern regions, after weeks long battles with tribesmen and government forces."
Sanaa, July 8 - At least 290 people have been killed this month in clashes between the Yemeni army and Shiite rebels in the country's northern provinces of Amran and al-Jouf, an interior ministry official said Tuesday.

About 50 soldiers and 240 rebels were killed and dozens of others wounded in the clashes in Amran and al-Jouf since July 4 following the collapse of the latest truce, Xinhua reported citing an official as saying on condition of anonymity.

Military reinforcements were seen arriving Tuesday at the main entrance of Amran, 50 km north of the Yemeni capital Sanaa.

Early this month, 17 civilians were killed and dozens of local residents injured in the clashes in Amran province, according to residents.

The government and Shiite rebels signed two ceasefire deals in June, but the two sides failed to abide by the truce.

The officials accused the rebels of seeking to expand control over the country's northern regions.

However, the rebels denied the allegation, saying they seek to provide protection to their tribal followers from the Sunni tribes.

In the past two months, the Shiite rebels took over several towns and cities in the country's northern regions, after weeks long battles with tribesmen and government forces.

According to the UN humanitarian agencies in Yemen, up to 40,000 people have been displaced in the conflicts between the government forces and the armed Shiite rebels in Amran since October 2013.


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