x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 25 November 2017

Houthi rebels may soon 'oust' Saleh, Yemen vice president says

Gen Ali Mohsen Al Ahmar said the Houthi rebels, with whom Mr Saleh entered an alliance to govern the capital, will look to edge him out after what seemed like a break down in relations earlier this month

Vice president Gen Ali Mohsen Al Ahmar said that Houthis are better known for their political trickery then their military might and that the rebel group is looking to oust former president Ali Abdullah Saleh. Mohamed Al Sayaghi / Reuters
Vice president Gen Ali Mohsen Al Ahmar said that Houthis are better known for their political trickery then their military might and that the rebel group is looking to oust former president Ali Abdullah Saleh. Mohamed Al Sayaghi / Reuters

The vice president of Yemen said the Houthi rebels will try in the coming days to 'oust' former president Ali Abdullah Saleh, according to local reports.

President Abdrabu Mansur Hadi’s second in command, Gen Ali Mohsen Al Ahmar, said that the Houthi rebels, with whom Mr Saleh entered an alliance to govern the capital, Sanaa, will look to edge him out after what seemed like a break down in relations earlier this month.

He spoke to local officials in the Marib governance in North Yemen, saying that it was "in the Houthis nature as told by their history" to back-stab those they are supposedly cooperating with, said the reports.

He added that the Houthi rebels would not have been able to rise through the ranks without violating certain agreements and eliminating those with whom they might have been cooperating.

“It’s not their military might or their tactics but their ability to take advantage of opportunities [that has allowed them to rise in the ranks],” said Gen Al Ahmar.

This news comes just days after Abdul Hakim Al Khaiwani, deputy interior minister of Houthi-governed Sanaa, called for the capital to be placed under a state of emergency.

The Houthi rebels governing Sanaa called for the precaution after their militias clashed with forces belonging to Mr Saleh. However, the former president maintains there are no divisions between his loyalists and the Houthi rebels.

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Read more:

Houthis call for state of emergency in Sanaa to 'face the enemy'

Yemen ex-president Saleh demands arrest of aide’s killers

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The Arab Spring protests in 2011 forced Mr Saleh to stand down, but he kept control of sections of the military. Since then, he has controlled Sanaa alongside the Houthis and fought against Yemeni government forces backed by the Saudi-led coalition supporting the internationally-recognised government of president Hadi.

Relations between Saleh loyalists and the rebels seemed to have broken down last month over statements that accused each other of conspiring with “the enemy” by settling on a peace deal.

Meanwhile, Mansour Ahmed Al Mansour, the spokesman for the Joint Incidents Assessment Team, said on Tuesday that the Saudi-led coalition has committed only three mistakes resulting in the loss of human lives since they intervened in the war in Yemen in 2015.

He denied reports by international organisations that there were a number of attacks on illegitimate targets.

The Saudi-led coalition, which includes the UAE, and Yemeni forces drove the Iran-backed rebels from much of southern Yemen, but the fighting became bogged down in Taez province and along the Red Sea coast.

The UN said that more than 8,400 people have been killed and more than three million have been displaced in Yemen's civil war, pushing the country to the brink of famine and sparking a widespread cholera epidemic

The World Health Organisation and Yemen's health ministry said the cholera outbreak in the country has infected 612,703 people and killed 2,048 since it began in April. Some districts are still reporting rises in new cases.

However, the overall spread of the epidemic has slowed in the past couple of months, with the daily number of new suspected cases cut to around 3,000 in recent days.