Yemen's Houthis: Saleh's overture to Saudi 'a coup'

03 December, 2017, 01:38 | Author: Jeffery Armstrong
  • Yemen's Houthis: Saleh's overture to Saudi 'a coup'

Tensions between the Houthi and Saleh's party rose Wednesday after Saleh's supporters refused access of the Houthis to the Saleh Mosque in the south of Sanaa to secure a religious ceremony to commemorate birthday of Prophet Muhammad.

"Such behaviors are unjustifiable", al-Houthi said on Saturday in response to measures taken by supporters of Saleh, the head of Yemeni General People's Congress (GPC) party, against the Houthi Ansarullah movement. The reaction is another sign of a developing riftamong rebel groups in the Yemen civil war.

The comments, carried by the Saudi-owned Al-Hadath news channel, came after Saleh said he was ready to turn a new page with the coalition if it stopped what he described as its aggression on Yemen and lifted restrictions on transportation.

Saleh on Saturday said he was ready to turn a "new page" in relations with the Saudi-led coalition, which had intervened to place his successor back in power.

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"The uprising in Yemen's capital Sanaa is the sign of an awakening of the nightmare", UAE's Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said on Twitter.

Houthis and Saleh loyalists jointly overran Sanaa and much of the country in 2014, forcing the internationally recognized government of President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi to flee to Saudi Arabia.

Three-fourths of Yemenis need some kind of humanitarian assistance to meet basic needs, global observers have said, with more than 17 million people facing food insecurity, including 8.4 million at risk of starvation.

But Houthi rebels, his allies until this week, accused him of a "coup".

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The coalition, which has fought Saleh and the Iran-backed Houthis since 2015, last month imposed a total blockade on the impoverished country after a rebel missile was shot down near Riyadh.

In 2015, Saudi Arabia and its Arab allies launched a massive air campaign aimed at reversing Houthi military gains and shoring up Yemen's embattled government.

"I appeal to the leader Saleh to show more wisdom and maturity. not to heed incitement calls, and help restore security to the country through cooperation", al-Houthi further said.

He added that some speculators claim that Saleh's statements are actually a proposition by Saudi Arabia to roll down the hostilities in a manner which would save face.

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Yemen's war has killed more than 10,000 people since 2015, displaced more than two million people, caused a cholera outbreak infecting almost one million people and led the country on the brink of starvation.

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