As the Houthi rebels continue their military advance throughout much of northern and central Yemen without any indication of resistance from the Yemeni authorities, al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) has increasingly clashed with the Shi’ite rebels that it deems “apostates.”

A day following their seizure of the port city of Hodeidah and the central Yemeni city of Dhamar, on Oct. 15 Houthi rebels attempted to expand the area under their control further east to the city of Radaa in Bayda province, the site of increased AQAP activity in recent months. As the Houthis began taking control of the areas surrounding Radaa, clashes broke out between the rebels and AQAP fighters, killing at least 10 people. The Houthis already have a growing presence in Bayda province, but their advance on Radaa, in western Bayda, seemed to be halted by the AQAP defensive.

AQAP also claimed credit for the assassination of a Houthi colonel in Sana’a on Oct. 15. In a statement released the same day, AQAP said that its fighters targeted Colonel Ali Zayd al Dhari with no less than 13 bullets in the Sa’awan district of Sana’a during the afternoon hours. The AQAP statement clarified that in addition his military role, al Dhari was a prominent Houthi leader. […]