UAE flag flies in Marib, as Crown Prince vowed

Photo: Pro-government forces and Arab coalition troops raise the flags of the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain on a hill above the Marib Dam on September 29. The dam was captured from Houthi rebels on September 28 . Photo courtesy of the Yemeni military

ADEN // Flags of the Saudi ­Arabia-led coalition flew over the Marib Dam yesterday, fulfilling a vow made by Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces.

Sheikh Mohammed had this month declared that the flag of the UAE would fly over the dam.

Marib province had become the focus of fighting between Yemen’s pro-government forces, backed by the coalition, and Houthi rebels. Troops loyal to Yemen’s former president Ali Abdullah Saleh are allied with the Houthis.

Brig Gen Murad Turaiq said the flags of the UAE, Yemen, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia flew over Marib’s dam after the army and coalition forces finished clearing the area of Houthi rebels.

Meanwhile, the coalition yesterday denied claims that its warplanes were behind the bombing of a wedding in south-west Yemen as the death toll rose to 131, including women and children.

Residents said a missile had struck the wedding in Wahijah village near the Red Sea city of Mokha.

The spokesman for the coalition, Brig Gen Ahmed Al Assiri, denied the allegation, saying: “The coalition did not conduct any air strikes in the area over the past three days. This is false.”