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Yemen’s warring parties exchange heavy weapons fire in Hodeidah

Warring parties in Yemen exchanged heavy weapons fire overnight in Hodeidah, according to residents and military sources. The clashes came as the United Nations scrambled to salvage a ceasefire deal in the Yemeni port city that is a lifeline for millions at risk of starvation. Witnesses say the clashes were the heaviest since the ceasefire went into effect on December  18. Houthi forces and troops backed by a Saudi-led coalition traded artillery, mortar and rocket salvoes late on Sunday and early on Monday, with explosions heard across the Red Sea city, Reuters reports. The Houthis “tried a surprise assault on our troops but we stopped them,” a source from the internationally-recognized government said. However, the Houthis’ Al Masirah TV accused government forces of shelling their positions without provocation.