RIYADH — Nine Saudi soldiers are missing after clashes between the country's forces and Yemeni Shiite rebels along the border between the two countries, the Saudi defence ministry said on Thursday.
The Zaidi rebels may have taken the soldiers prisoner, a ministry spokesman told official SPA news agency.
The spokesman, listing the names of the missing people, said the rebels are "entirely responsible for their wellbeing."
Saudi media on Thursday published pictures of people said to be "Saudis taken prisoner during the current military operations."
The spokesman gave no figures for Saudi soldiers or civilians killed in the fighting.
According to unofficial Saudi estimates, at least nine of the country's soldiers have been killed in the border clashes, along with four civilians.
The Zaidi rebels, also known as Huthis, have been battling Yemeni government troops since August in the latest outbreak of a conflict that began in 2004.
Saudi forces overtly joined in the fighting for the first time with air and heavy artillery strikes on November 4 after a small band of rebels entered Saudi territory and killed a border guard.
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