Ten Yemen Islamists killed in Huthi rebel attack

Shiite Muslim rebels killed 10 Sunni Islamists in Yemen Wednesday and wounded several others, in an attack in the northern province of Saada, an Islamist chief said.

The Zaidi rebels fired mortars and rockets at the Mazraa mosque and the surrounding area in Dammaj during noon prayers, said Muheeb al-Dhali, spokesman of the tribal Al-Nusra Alliance in the region.

Dhali said the rebels were attempting to storm the village, home to Sunni Salafists.

He said the rebels have besieged Dammaj, scene to frequent clashes in recent years, as tensions between Sunni Islamists and the rebels escalate.

At least 42 people were killed in 10 days of clashes last month between Sunni Islamists and Shiite rebels in the northern Amran province, and the central Ibb region.

The Zaidis, also known as Huthis after their late leader Abdel Malek al-Huthi, rose up in 2004 against the government of ex-president Ali Abdullah Saleh, accusing it of marginalising them politically and economically.

Thousands of people were killed in the uprising before a ceasefire was agreed in February 2010.