Yemen's deadly civil war takes an unexpected turn

Yemen's deadly civil war takes an unexpected turn

Yemen's deadly civil war takes an unexpected turn

Saleh agreed to leave presidency in 2012, n 33 years in front of Yemen, after months of popular protests and worldwide pressure (including that of its neighbours) to prevent anor civil war being unleashed as in Libya or Syria.

The former Yemeni president's break with the Houthis came after five days of bitter clashes around the capital, Sana'a, between his supporters and those of the Iranian-backed Houthi militia.

Saleh on Saturday said he was ready to turn a "new page" in relations with the Saudi-led coalition, which had intervened to place his successor back in power.

Yemeni strongman Ali Abdullah Saleh said Saturday he was open to talks with the Saudi-led coalition fighting Houthi rebels, as his alliance with the Houthi insurgents appeared to be crumbling.

The Saudis want to restore the internationally-recognised government of President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who was forced into retreat and then exile by the fighting.

Tensions between the Houthi and Saleh's party rose Wednesday after Saleh's supporters refused access of the Houthis to the Saleh Mosque in the south of Sanaa to secure a religious ceremony to commemorate birthday of Prophet Muhammad.

"We will deal with them in a positive way and what happened to Yemen is enough", he added.

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"Our country is under aggression and the Houthis are the cause of this aggression due to their practices", he said. There has been no official word on casualties but the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said that dozens were killed and hundreds were wounded in the fighting.

The Houthi chief also accused Saleh of secret collaboration with the leaders of the coalition.

A coalition statement said the decision to "take the lead and to side with their people will free Yemen of. militias loyal to Iran".

The coalition accuses Saleh of having betrayed his Arab neighbours by joining the Houthi-led forces they say are aligned with non-Arab Iran.

The Houthis accused Mr Saleh of betrayal, and vowed to keep up the fight against the Saudi-led coalition. It also called on supporters, including tribal fighters, to "defend themselves, their country, their revolution and their republic".

Meanwhile, Houthi leader, Abdel-Malek al-Houthi, called for dialogue with Saleh and his rebel forces to end the growing violence between the two factions.

The conflict has since claimed more than 10,000 lives and triggered what the United Nations has described as the world's worst humanitarian crisis.

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