Pro-gov't Yemeni exchange prisoners with Houthis in Hodeidah: official

Source: Xinhua| 2020-02-28 04:07:37|Editor: huaxia

ADEN, Yemen, Feb. 27 (Xinhua) -- A prisoner swap between pro-government Yemeni forces and Houthi militia took place on Thursday in the country's Red Sea port city of Hodeidah, a military official told Xinhua.

According to the military source who asked to remain anonymous, "two pro-government soldiers were set free in exchange for the release of three Houthi rebels from the jail manned by the government forces in Hodeidah."

The prisoner swap occurred in Kilo16 area in the eastern part of Hodeidah under the direct supervision of a joint team representing the two warring rivals, the source said.

He added that the pro-government forces succeeded also in freeing several soldiers from the Houthi jail in Hodeidah during a similar previous prison swap.

As the main Yemeni port city along the coast of the Red Sea, Hodeidah is the key lifeline entry of most Yemen's commercial imports and humanitarian aid.

The grinding war of more than five years has pushed over 20 million people to the verge of starvation.

The Iran-allied Houthi militia control much of Hodeidah while the Saudi-backed government troops have advanced to its southeastern districts of the strategic port city.