Clashes between forces loyal to the separatist Southern Transitional Council (STC) and government troops continued in Abyan governorate on Wednesday, November 18. Reports suggest that a series of violent explosions took place during Wednesday evening to the north of Zinjibar, in addition to the outskirts of al-Tiriya and Sheikh Salem, where shelling had taken place. Wednesday's fighting comes following the recent arrival of further STC forces and clashes that have led to the closure of at least one of the province's major roads. Reports suggest that nearly 50 people have been killed in fighting in the vicinity of Zinjibar over the week and some 90 others have been injured.
Further military operations are likely in the around Zinjibar and other areas in the near term.
Nominally allies against the Houthis in Yemen's ongoing civil war, Southern Transitional Council (STC) fighters have frequently clashed with government forces over control of southern Yemen since August 2019. Saudi Arabia has repeatedly attempted to intervene in the dispute, brokering a power-sharing agreement in November 2019, but previous efforts have failed to resolve the crisis and the STC declared self-rule in Aden and other key southern provinces in April 2020.
Due to poor security conditions, many Western governments advise their citizens against all travel to Yemen. Travel to the country should only be considered with proper security protocols in place. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel.
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