The Yemeni armed forces and Houthi militias on Monday struck a deal to exchange captives, resulting in the release of more than 200 people, official sources said.
According to Yemen National Military Website (SeptemberNet), the exchange included prisoners in the liberated Shabwa province.
There were 241 prisoners and abductees, SeptemberNet said, while the Houthi Saba news agency said that 275 prisoners were released.
The Yemeni military’s website quoted sources in the brigade “26 Mika” as saying that the deal succeeded in releasing 120 abductees from Bihan’s directorate and the body of a martyr who died under torture, while the army released in return 120 prisoners of war belonging to the coup militia, who were arrested in the battlefield.
The military source said the deal was carried out under the instruction of the Supreme Command of the National Army and the leadership of Bihan, led by Major General Mufreh Buhaibeh with the participation of the heads of brigades and Popular Resistance forces at the Bihan battlefront.
Contrary to what the Yemeni army reported, sources from the Houthi militia said that the deal included the release of 165 of its members taken captive by the National Army.
It added that "local mediation" succeeded in concluding the exchange deal, which included "the release of 275 prisoners from both sides."
The Yemeni army forces had liberated the last areas controlled by Houthi militias in Shabwa province, including Bihan and Assilan directorates, in December before continuing their incursion into the neighboring province of Baidha and expelling militias from Na’aman and Nata directorates.