Houthi rebels have taken a key air base from forces loyal to Yemen’s President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi, continuing an advance towards his stronghold of Aden.

Locals said rebel fighters backed by allied army units seized al-Anad early on Wednesday after heavy fighting.

Hours after the fall of the base, only 60km (37 miles) north of Aden, there were reports that Mr Hadi had fled his palace for an undisclosed location.

But aides to the president swiftly denied that he had left the country.

Later, unidentified warplanes targeted the palace compound in Aden, officials and witnesses said, in the third such attack in a week.

Mr Hadi took refuge in the city last month after fleeing Sanaa.

The rebels took full control of the capital in January, placing him under house arrest and declaring a “presidential council” would rule the country.

‘Secure location’

On Wednesday morning, the Houthis’ TV channel, al-Masirah, reported that rebel fighters had “secured” al-Anad air base, the country’s largest.

There was no immediate comment from Mr Hadi’s supporters, but locals confirmed the base had been captured by the Houthis and soldiers loyal to ousted former President Ali Abdullah Saleh.

Source: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-32048604