The coalition said it destroyed 36 military vehicles and killed more than 264 rebel fighters in the past 72 hours, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

Fighters for Yemen's Saudi-backed government have been facing Iran-backed Houthi rebels in the country's northeastern province of Marib.
Fighters for Yemen's Saudi-backed government have been facing Iran-backed Houthi rebels in the country's northeastern province of Marib. (AFP)

The Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen has said its air strikes killed more than 260 Houthi rebels in the past three days, but a rebel spokesman said the bombing campaign will not stop them.

"Thirty-six military vehicles were destroyed and more than 264" rebel fighters were killed in the past 72 hours, the coalition said on Sunday, quoted by the official Saudi Press Agency.

The strikes were carried out in Al Jawba, about 50 kilometres (30 miles) south of Marib, and Al Kassara, 30 kilometres to the northwest.

"If the enemy thought that their warplanes could limit the progress of our forces or break the determination of our soldiers they are mistaken," Houthi spokesman Yahya Saree said on the rebel's Al Masirah TV channel.

He claimed that during an operation the rebels had killed 550 pro-government fighters, wounded 1,200, and taken 90 prisoners, without specifying a time frame.

The figures given by the rebels could not independently be verified.

READ MORE: More than 80 Houthi rebels killed near Yemen’s Marib in Saudi strikes

Ceasefire call

The coalition has for the past two weeks reported almost daily air strikes around Marib.

The deaths are the latest among roughly 1,600 rebels the coalition claims it has killed in strikes over the past two weeks around Marib, the internationally recognised government's last bastion in oil-rich northern Yemen.

The Houthis began a major push to seize Marib in February, and have renewed their offensive since September after a lull.

The Yemeni civil war began in 2014 when the Houthis seized the capital Sanaa, 120 kilometres west of Marib, prompting Saudi-led forces to intervene to prop up the government the following year.

Tens of thousands of people have died and millions have been displaced in the war, which the United Nations describes as the world's worst humanitarian crisis.

The UN Security Council called on Wednesday for "de-escalation" in Yemen, in a unanimously adopted statement to counter the risk of "large-scale famine" in the country.

The 15 council members demanded an immediate nationwide ceasefire, and sought an end to the Marib escalation.

"The members of the Security Council expressed grave concern for the dire humanitarian situation, including prolonged starvation and the growing risk of large-scale famine," according to a statement.

READ MORE: UN: Millions of Yemenis are 'marching towards starvation'

Source: AFP