(Bloomberg) -- A delegation sent by Yemen’s southern separatists arrived in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday for talks with the Riyadh-backed Yemeni government, as the kingdom seeks to end fighting between the two that threatened a Gulf alliance.

The head of the Southern Transitional Council, Aidarous Al-Zubaidi, was leading the six-member team, according to a statement. Arabiya TV said the council’s representatives were in Jeddah.

The government and separatists are nominal allies in the four-year war with Iran-backed Houthi rebels. But they have fought fierce battles in recent weeks in southern Yemen, including in the port city of Aden.

Heightening tensions, Yemen’s government accused warplanes belonging to the United Arab Emirates, a key Saudi ally which also supports the council, of bombing its troops.

The U.A.E. said its forces were responding to threats from armed groups against the coalition.

--With assistance from Dana Khraiche.

To contact the reporter on this story: Mohammed Hatem in Dubai at mhatem1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Alaa Shahine at asalha@bloomberg.net, Mark Williams, Dana Khraiche

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