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Yemeni president holds emergency meeting following escalation of clashes with Houthis

September 19, 2014 at 4:45 pm

Yemeni President Abd Rabbu Mansur Hadi held an emergency security meeting for the government yesterday following the renewal of clashes with Houthi militants north of the capital Sanaa, a government source said.

The source added that Hadi may take security measures for the sake of addressing the deteriorating conditions in light of the displacement of a number of families from the areas where clashes have taken place.

This comes in parallel with the continuation of the negotiations conducted by the UN envoy to Yemen Jamal Benomar, with the leader of Ansar Al-Allah Abdul-Malik Al-Houthi, in the province of Saada, the group’s stronghold, in the north of the country.

Earlier yesterday, sources said that two Yemeni soldiers were killed and 30 others wounded in clashes with Houthi militants in Shamlan district in the capital. Meanwhile, the same district witnessed mass displacement of residents to other areas in Sanaa.

The Yemeni army has deployed tanks around Hadi’s residence, which lies eight kilometres away from the site of the clashes.

On Tuesday, clashes broke out between the Yemeni army and Houthi militants, leaving dozens dead and wounded.

Prior to the clashes, the Houthis asked the residents of the area to leave their homes, according to eyewitnesses.

The Houthi group has been organising protests at the entrances of Sanaa and near the headquarters of ministries in the city centre, calling for the resignation of the government and the reduction of fuel prices. An initiative by President Hadi to appoint a new government and reduce fuel prices has so far failed to contain the crisis due to the Houthis’ insistence to implement the decisions before the protests stop.