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    04-Dec-2017

Yemen's ex-President Saleh Killed by Huthi Rebels

 

AFP

 

Yemen's former President Ali Abdullah Saleh, who ruled the country for more than three decades and played a pivotal role in the country's ongoing civil war, was killed on Monday at the hands of Iran-backed Huthi rebels, his party and the Huthis said.
 
The Huthi-run Masirah TV announced the death of the "leader of the traitors" on Monday, referring to Saleh, who until last week was in a fragile alliance with the rebels.
 
Saleh's political party confirmed his death, calling on supporters to “resist” the Huthi rebels.
 
A senior official with Yemen's internationally-recognized government also confirmed to The Associated Press that Saleh had been killed.
 
Supporters of the Huthis circulated a video allegedly showing Saleh's body on social networking websites.
 
Officials from various sides, including the Huthis' opponents, have confirmed that the video shows the former powerful president.
 
Abdul Rahman al-Ahnomi, a top Huthi media official, told the AP that Saleh was killed near Marib, the eastern province bordering Saudi Arabia. "He was trying to flee to Saudi," he said.
 
The video, apparently shot by one of the attackers, showed a Huthi crowd picking up Saleh's dead body, wrapped in a colorful blanket, off the ground and lifting it onto a pickup truck. Saleh's eyes appear wide open, the back of his head badly injured, and his shirt blood stained under a dark suit.
 
A senior Yemeni government official affiliated with Huthis' rivals and some of Saleh's associates, such as Nabil al-Soufi and Ali al-Bukhiti, confirmed his death on social media and TV interviews.
 
Saleh ruled Yemen for more than three decades until he was forced to resign following an Arab Spring uprising in 2011. He remained in the country, however, and continued to wield power from behind the scenes. In 2014, his forces allied with the Huthis despite the fact that as president he had gone to war with them on more than one occasion.
 
The rebel alliance splintered last week, setting off heavy clashes between the Huthis and Saleh's forces.
 
 

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