Khaled Bahah
Khaled Bahah

The Shiite Houthi group, who controls the Yemeni capital Sanaa, on Monday released Yemeni Prime Minister Khaled Bahah and cabinet members after almost two months of house arrest, a government spokesman said.
“The release came after efforts exerted by U.N. envoy to Yemen Jamal Benomar and weeks-long national campaigns by the political parties and non-governmental organizations,” Spokesman Rajeh Badi told Xinhua.
Meanwhile, Bahah said in a statement that he now has “absolute freedom to travel inside and outside the country as guaranteed by human rights laws and constitution.”
Khaled_BahahBahah said he will visit his family in the southeastern province of Hadramout.
It is “a goodwill gesture which aims to push ahead the ongoing political talks currently under UN mediation,” he said.
Bahah and his cabinet members submitted resignations to President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi on Jan. 22 after the Houthi militia stormed the presidential palace in Sanaa, and put them under house arrest.
Last week, Yemeni Defense Minister Major General Mahmoud al-Subaihi fled Houthi-imposed house arrest and headed to his hometown in the southern Lahj province. Subaihi met with Hadi last week in the southern port city of Aden, where Hadi resumed his presidential duties after a three-week house arrest by the Houthi group in Sanaa.
On Feb. 6, the Houthi group dissolved the parliament and formed a presidential council, a unilateral move rejected by Yemen’s political parties and denounced by the Gulf Arab states.
Aden, the country’s second city, was capital of former South Yemen before unification with the north in 1990, when Sanaa became the unified country’s capital.
Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have moved their embassies to Aden after more than a dozen countries closed their missions in Sanaa in February in protest against the Houthi takeover.
Security has deteriorated in Yemen since January when the Shiite Houthi group seized the presidential palace in Sanaa after deadly clashes with presidential guards, leading to the resignations of president Hadi and prime minister Bahah.
The Shiite Houthi group, also known as Ansarullah, is based in the far northern province of Saada. It has been expanding its influence southward after signing a United Nations-sponsored peace and power-sharing deal on Sept. 21, 2014 following week-long deadly clashes.
Complained of marginalization for years, it had fought the government between 2004 and 2010. Enditem

Source: Xinhua

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