Monday, 11 December, 2017

Yemen's Saleh says 'citizens have revolted against Houthi aggression'

Clashes erupted in Yemen's capital as talks between feuding rebel allies failed to broker a truce Clashes erupted in Yemen's capital as talks between feuding rebel allies failed to broker a truce
Lillian Steele | 03 December, 2017, 01:30

"The decision of Popular General Congress to take initiative and align itself with its people will free Yemen from loyal militias to Iran", he said in a statement released by Saudi SPA Agency, in reference to Saleh's party.

Yemeni President Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi said all those who have identified a clear position in support of the popular uprising aimed at ending the coup and the restoration of the state "will all be partners in the present and future of Yemen".

Former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh said Saturday he was willing to talk with Saudi leaders as his coalition with Iranian-backed rebels appeared to be crumbling.

Mr Saleh's GPC party accused the Houthis of failing to honour a truce and said in a statement on its website that the Houthis bear responsibility for dragging the country into a civil war.

The statement was issued after a meeting between Hadi and his advisers to form a broad national alliance in the face of the militias Houthi.

Fearing renewed clashes, people were opting to stay at home on Thursday night, witnesses said, as armed supporters of both sides deployed in some streets.

The alliance between the Houthi rebels and former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh seems to be on the verge of a split.

Tension between Saleh and the Houthis has been rising in recent months.

The offer came as clashes between Saleh loyalists and rebel fighters intensified in Sana'a.

"I call on our brothers and the Arab coalition to halt their aggression, allow access to medical and relief aid, open airports and we will turn the page", Saleh said in a televised speech.

He added: "We will deal with them in a positive way and what happened to Yemen is enough". The country has since fallen into chaos and Mr Saleh later joined the Houthis to drive Mr Hadi out of the capital in 2014.

On Saturday there were reports of further fighting in Sanaa, with explosions and gunfire concentrated in the southern suburb of Hadda where relatives of Mr Saleh live.

Saleh's supporters managed on Saturday to seize control of several embassies and government buildings from the Houthis.

"Saleh's speech is a coup against our alliance and partnership. and exposed the deception of those who claim to stand against aggression", a Houthi spokesman said in a statement carried by the rebels' al-Masirah TV.

The Saudi-led coalition - which has fought Saleh and the Houthi rebels since 2015 - last month imposed a total blockade on the impoverished country after a rebel missile was shot down near Riyadh.

According to United Nations officials, more than 10,000 people have been killed in the war, while more than 11 percent of the country's population has been displaced as a direct result of the conflict.

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