Yemen Houthi Rebels ‘Announce Government Takeover’

Yemen’s rebel Houthi group has declared that it is to takeover the country’s government and dissolving parliament, having held the capital city Sana’a since September.

Houthi rebels in Yemen have released a statement announcing their intentions to takeover the government of the country and dissolve parliament.

In a televised statement, the group said a five-member council would act as the president for an interim period.

The group took control of the capital Sanaa in September, forcing the resignation of President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi in January.

The announcement comes after the failure of UN-brokered peace talks.

The Houthis set a Wednesday deadline for political parties to reach an agreement on ending the country’s political turmoil, threatening to act unilaterally otherwise. The rebels move would mark “a new era that will take Yemen to safe shores”, the statement said, according to press.

The declaration is the final stage of what many Yemenis have seen for months as a Houthi coup.

Government decisions will now be dictated by revolutionary committees, dominated by the rebels.

Yemen has been in a political vacuum since last month when President Hadi and his government resigned after the rebels took full control of Sanaa.

The Houthis delivered their message from the Republican palace in Sanaa to a huge gathering of political, military and tribal figures in an effort to show the range of their support. But the rebels are minority Shia from the north. Their writ will not be recognised by Sunni and southern leaders, threatening Yemen with a further descent into chaos.

The situation in Yemen escalated last month when the Houthis seized a key aide of President Hadi, in an attempt to block a draft constitution. They later took the presidential palace and other key buildings, prompting Mr Hadi’s resignation. He said he could not continue in his post under such pressure

He and and other ministers have been under house arrest since then.

Iran has been accused of giving financial and military support to the Houthis – something both have denied.

Yemen has been riven by instability since protesters inspired by the Arab Spring forced the overthrow of President Ali Abdullah Saleh in 2011.

The country is also fighting an al-Qaeda insurgency with the help of US drones.

Categories: Middle East, World

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