Two Yemeni soldiers were killed on Thursday when Shi'ite Muslim Houthi tribal fighters attacked an army base near the capital Sanaa, military sources said.
Another four soldiers were injured in the attack, the sources added, as sectarian fighting that flared up in October in the north spread closer to Sanaa.
Four Houthi rebels were also injured, they said.
Yemen deployed soldier to the northeastern part of the capital this week after at least 40 people were killed in clashes between Houthis and Sunni Muslim tribesmen.
Mediators have been trying to persuade the warring parties to retreat from positions they were holding near Sanaa and replace them with government soldiers but without success yet.