Thousands of angry Houthis rallied in the Yemeni capital Sanaa on Thursday to protest airstrikes on Houthi targets by Saudi Arabia and its allies. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Houthis rallied in Yemen's capital on Thursday (March 26) as warplanes from Saudi Arabia and Arab allies struck at the Houthi militia forces who have taken over much of the country in their campaign to oust President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi. "This blatant intervention is proof of how unfair the Saudi family is but, God willing, it will backfire and it will bring them shame," one protester among hundreds, Hashem al-Motawakil, said. The Saudi-led military intervention marks a major escalation of the Yemen crisis, in which Iran supports the Shi'ite Muslim Houthis, and Sunni Muslim monarchies in the Gulf back Hadi and his fellow Sunni loyalists in Yemen's south. Iran denounced the surprise assault on the Houthis and demanded an immediate halt to Saudi-led military operations. It emerged during Thursday that Hadi had left his last refuge in Yemen, the southern port city of Aden and travelled to Saudi Arabia. Saudi-owned al Arabiya television said he would go onto the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh to attend an Arab summit on Saturday (March 28). But it was not certain if Hadi would be able to return to Aden. On the city's northern outskirts, Houthis and allied troops fought gun battles with militiamen loyal to Hadi. Thirteen pro-Houthi fighters and three militiamen were killed. Pro-Hadi fighters retook Aden airport, a day after it was captured by Houthi forces advancing on the city.