Yemen's Houthi rebels form new government

The rebels said they were responding to exiled president Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi's "stubbornness" in continuing the war in Yemen.

Photo by: AFP
Photo by: AFP

Ceasefire deals to end the conflict in Yemen have repeatedly broken down.

Yemen's Houthi rebels have formed a new government with their political allies in a development that will likely set back international efforts to end the 20 months of war in the country.

The new cabinet was announced by the "Supreme Political Council", a body through which the rebels have been controlling parts of Yemen since pushing the country's internationally recognised president Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi into exile.

Diplomats had hoped the Houthis, who also control the capital Sanaa, would hold off on putting together a cabinet of their loyalists and instead form a unity government with Hadi, who is in Saudi Arabia since March 2015.

The announcement came at a time when US-backed, UN-mediated peace efforts have faltered.

Releasing the line-up of the "National Salvation Government" on Monday, the rebels said they were responding to Hadi's "stubbornness" in continuing the war with the backing of the Saudi-led Arab coalition that intervened in March 2015.

According to the UN, at least more than 7,000 people have been killed in the 20-month conflict between the Houthis and Hadi's forces and the subsequent air strikes by the Arab coalition. 

The rebels said the National Salvation Government "is tasked with putting in order the internal situation and confronting the (Saudi) aggression".

In the 42-member body, Saleh supporters have been given the defence, interior and foreign ministries and the Houthis the portfolios of petroleum, finance, information, education and justice, the Houthi-run news agency Saba reported.

The Houthis previously said forming a government with their allies, supporters of ex-president Ali Abdullah Saleh, did not mean abandoning the UN-sponsored peace process.

Rajeh Badi, a spokesman for the exiled Hadi government, said the move showed "a disregard not just for the Yemeni people but also for the international community."

"Over a year and a half since the Houthi militia's coup, no one in the international community has recognised the entities they have formed," Badi added.

 

 

Source: 
TRTWorld and agencies