Shi'ite Houthi rebels have seized the central Yemen city of Taiz in a new escalation of the conflict in the Arabian Peninsula country.
The Houthi militias, who are opposed to Yemeni President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, a U.S. ally, took control of the city's military airport without a struggle from local authorities late Saturday. They patrolled parts of Taiz Sunday, with Houthi gunmen firing shots into the air to disperse protestors demonstrating against them.
Hours after the takeover, the rebel leader Abdel-Malik al-Houthi vowed to send his fighters to the south where Hadi has taken refuge. In a televised speech, he called Hadi a puppet to international and regional powers who want to "import the Libyan model" to Yemen. READ MORE OF THIS STORY