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Yemeni president calls on Houthis to withdraw militant forces from all cities

Yemeni President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi has called on the Houthis to withdraw their gunmen without delay from all the cities they have seized throughout the country, including the capital Sanaa, Anadolu news reported.

This demand came during a speech that was broadcast on Yemen's television on Sunday, during a meeting at the presidential house in the capital with the Council of National Defence, the board of advisers, and Prime Minister-designate Khalid Bahah.

According to Anadolu, Hadi called on armed forces of the Houthi movement, also known as Ansar Allah, to withdraw, "without delay", their gunmen from all cities including the capital Sanaa, which has been dominated by the insurgents for more than a month now.

In his strongest attack yet against the Houthis since they seized control of Sanaa, the Yemeni president criticised what he called "the occupation of ministries, institutions of the state, and oil companies that is being carried out by militants who belong to the group".

He also called on the Houthis not to "escape from taking responsibility or to invent pretexts for occupying Yemen's cities".

He added, "No party has the right to fight terrorism but the national army," in reference to the Houthis announcing that they were fighting the "extremist groups" and "terrorists" in the province of El-Baydaa, at the centre of the country, as well as other areas.

Hadi noted that, "the army and security forces will continue their efforts in combating terrorist acts and fighting against terrorist groups that work in any region of the country."

He then appealed to the army to take its responsibility in the fight against terrorism and to protect the security of the country.

He also called on the various political factions in the country to implement the outcomes of the comprehensive national dialogue conference for the future of the people, urging them not to despair over the establishment of a civil state based on equal partnership.

In stressing the importance of working towards the restoration of the state and the position of the people, Hadi said: "We will take Yemen away from conflicts and narrow objectives to reach a prosperous future for all … in the interest of our nation."

The Yemeni president ended by renewing his call on the political parties in the country to work with the prime minister-designate towards the formation of a new government, according to "the agreed upon mechanisms: a government of national competencies that enhances the partnership and contributes to preparing the atmosphere for completing the formation of the modern Yemen, which we all aspire for."

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