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Pentagon: US officials in communication with Yemen's Houthis

The US Defence Department has said it is holding talks with Yemen's Houthi group following the resignation of President Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi on 22 January.

Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby said on Tuesday during a press conference in Washington that it is "accurate to say that the Houthis, as participants in these events, will certainly have reason to want to speak to international partners and the international community about their intentions and about how this process is going to unfold."

"Given the political uncertainty, it's fair to say that US government officials are in communication with various parties in Yemen about what is a very fluid and complex political situation," he added.

But the Pentagon's spokesperson also stressed that, "there's no intelligence sharing regimen with the Houthis. There's no formal agreement to do that."

UN Special Adviser on Yemen Jamal Benomar has been holding talks with representatives of Yemeni political factions, but no agreement has yet been reached about the crisis sparked by Hadi's resignation earlier this month.

Talks between the UN envoy and Yemeni factions are expected to continue over the next days.

On Monday and Tuesday of last week, sporadic fierce clashes erupted between presidential guards and Houthi militia fighters in several areas in Sanaa, including the vicinity of the president's residence. As a result, Houthis, who come from Yemen's minority Shia sect, seized control of the presidential palace that had been already stormed by Houthi militias on 21 September 2014. Houthi incursions also reached a number of Sunni-majority governorates.

Last Thursday, President Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi presented his resignation to the parliament shortly after the resignation of Prime Minister Khaled Bahah.

The Yemeni parliament has indefinitely postponed a meeting to discuss Hadi's resignation, according to the official Yemeni news agency, which is now under Houthi control.

Asia & AmericasMiddle EastNewsUSYemen
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