Yemen rebel ally to Saudis: Let's 'turn the page'

Yemen rebel ally to Saudis: Let's 'turn the page'

Yemen rebel ally to Saudis: Let's 'turn the page'

Earlier, Saleh's General People's Congress (GPC) party, accused the Houthis of failing to honor the truce and said in a statement on its website that the Houthis bear responsibility for dragging the country into a civil war. Hadi ran uncontested, won a landslide victory and was expected to resign two years later, but failed to do so amid increasing pressure from the Houthi rebels.

In a televised speech on December 2, Saleh called on the Saudi-led coalition to pave the way for an end to nearly three years of war by stopping attacks and lifting a siege on the country.

The Houthis have also accused the former president of accepting funds from the Saudi-backed Hadi government.

Former Yemen dictator Ali Abdullah Saleh has announced he is open to talks with the Saudi-led coalition fighting rebels, as his alliance with the Houthi insurgents appears to have crumbled.

"I call upon the brothers in neighbouring states and the alliance to stop their aggression, lift the siege, open the airports and allow food aid and the saving of the wounded and we will turn a new page by virtue of our neighbourliness", Mr Saleh announced in a televised interview with the TV station Yemen al-Youm.

He added: "We will deal with them in a positive way and what happened to Yemen is enough".

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Khattar Abou Diab, who teaches political science at the University of Paris, tells VOA that former president Saleh has a "strong political instinct" and that he made his move against the Houthis at a time when the situation on the ground is favorable. A spokesman said: "Saleh's speech is a coup against our alliance and partnership. and exposed the deception of those who claim to stand against aggression".

Media captionA Red Cross spokeswoman says fighting between rival factions has left Sanaa on edge.

On Wednesday, some Houthi fighters tried to enter al-Saleh Mosque in Sana'a, which is under the control of Saleh, but the guards prevented them and fighting broke out between the guards of the mosque and the Houthis, followed by fighting with the guards of the house of Tareq Saleh, Ali Abdullah Saleh's nephew.

The United Nations has warned Yemen faces mass starvation unless the Saudi-led coalition allows more food aid to enter the impoverished country.

Residents of Yemen's capital, Sanaa, are used to the sounds of gunfire, but in the last four days they've had to adjust to new faultlines in the conflict. The Houthi allied themselves with the forces loyal to Saleh and have fought a devastating war against forces loyal to Hadi and his foreign backers.

The war in Yemen is one of the worst humanitarian crises in the world, killing at least 10,000 people and leading to widespread hunger and disease.

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