Yemeni military officials say army troops have clashed with Shiite rebels who have been demonstrating for weeks demanding the government reinstate fuel subsidies and resign.

The officials say the Saturday clashes broke out in a northwestern district of Sanaa, the capital, near a state TV building, when troops stopped a rebel truck loaded with weapons. They did not report casualties and added that the area was now secured by army vehicles and troops.

They spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the press.

The flare-up of violence came at a time the Shiite-rebel group, known as Hawthis, were close to signing a deal with the Yemeni leadership through an international mediator.