Sanaa: Shiite rebels said on Saturday they have
pulled out of an occupied airport in northern Yemen and were
preparing to release their Saudi prisoners in line with a
truce agreed with the Sanaa government.
"Today, we carried out our withdrawal from the perimeter
of the airport of (the city of) Saada, where a plane will land
for the first time" since August, rebel spokesman Mohammed
Abdel Salam said to a news agency.
He said the insurgents had also started to dismantle
roadblocks in the north and were preparing to free Saudi
prisoners captured in border clashes that broke out in
Salam said "measures are underway to hand over the Saudi
prisoners to a mediator, Ali Nasser Kersha," a tribal official
from the northern province of Saada.
He did not specify how many prisoners the rebels were
holding, how many would be freed, or time or date of releases.
The northern Shiite Huthi rebels, named after their late
leader, agreed to stop fighting earlier this week after they
accepted ceasefire terms laid down by Sanaa.
Calm prevailed in the north today, the second day of a
shaky truce that broke into deadly violence only hours after
it went into effect late on Thursday, both sides said.
"The situation is calm on all fronts in Saada province,"
which straddles Saudi Arabia and is the centre of a
six-year-old rebellion, said one military source.
"But the calm is precarious," said another of the latest
in a string of truces over the years that have broken down.
First Published: Saturday, February 13, 2010, 22:04