Arab League Secretary-General Nabil Elaraby yesterday warned Shia Houthi rebels in Yemen against taking further unilateral steps that could escalate the situation there, describing the “constitutional declaration” under which the group seized control in the country a “coup against the constitutional legitimacy to impose the group’s will at gunpoint”, the Anadolu Agency reported.
In a statement issued by the League, Elarabi said: “The Houthis unilateral escalatory steps will lead to the collapse of the political process and to increasing the state of division and violence. They threaten Yemen’s security, stability and unity and impose serious risks to regional and international peace and security.”
The statement stressed “the need to respect Yemen’s legitimacy” and expressed the League’s refusal of all unilateral steps taken by the group.
Elaraby called for the “immediate release of President Abed Rabbuh Mansour Hadi, his Prime Minister Khaled Bahah as well as senior Yemeni officials and to remove the house arrest imposed on them.”
He called on all Yemeni parties to respond to UN envoy Jamal Bin Omar’s reconciliation efforts and to national dialogue to resolve political differences.
Elaraby pointed out that he “continues to conduct consultations with various parties to arrange for an urgent meeting of the Arab League to discuss developments in Yemen.”
The group announced a “constitutional declaration” forming presidential and national councils and a transitional government.
Yemen is living in a constitutional void since the resignation of President Hadi and his government last month in the wake of violent clashes between the presidential guards and Houthi militants led to the group’s control of the presidential palace and besieging the homes of the Yemeni president and several ministers.