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A coalition of regional countries led by Saudi Arabia laid siege to conflict-ridden Yemen Thursday, launching airstrikes against Houthi rebels and vowing to cut off any outside support for the Iranian-backed movement.Egyptian military and security officials told the Associated Press that the military intervention would go further, with a ground assault by Egyptian, Saudi and other forces, planned once airstrikes have weakened the rebels.In the air assault – codenamed "Operation Decisive Storm" – Saudi Arabia deployed some 100 fighter jets, 150,000 soldiers and other navy units, Al-Arabiya TV reported. Separately, Arab foreign ministers meeting in Egypt endorsed a draft resolution to form a unified military force, to counter growing regional security threats.The U.S.- and Gulf-backed president Hadi was forced to flee to the southern port of Aden, relying on the support of some police and military units and allied militiamen.The airstrikes appeared to boost the morale of troops and militiamen loyal to Hadi. In Aden, pro-Hadi militiamen battled in two districts with Houthi fighters backed by forces loyal to Saleh.
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