Saudi Arabia is deploying a significant task force to the border with neighboring Yemen, where Houthi Shiite rebels allegedly forced the president to leave the country. President Hadi has been asking the UN to approve the use of foreign forces in Yemen.
The situation in Yemen remains murky, with Houthi militants claiming capture of the southern seaport of Aden, President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi’s stronghold. The fighters say the city of Aden is now under their control and they’re arresting the president’s supporters there.
The rebels claim Hadi has fled the country, and announced a 20 million riyal ($100,000) reward for Hadi’s capture, Lebanese-based Al-Manar TV reported, citing the rebels’ representatives. While two of the president’s aides have said he remains in Aden and has no intention of leaving the country, later reports claim he has left Yemen.
Yemen’s president has left the country on a boat from Aden, officials told AP. Hadi is now traveling by sea to the neighboring country of Djibouti, Yemen’s former president Ali Abdullah Saleh’s secretary told RIA Novosti.
Arab Gulf states announced late Wednesday that they have decided to “repel Houthi aggression” in neighboring Yemen, following a request from the country’s President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi.
President Hadi, who was forced to flee his presidential complex in Aden earlier in the day, has urged the Gulf states to intervene military in Yemen.
In their joint statement Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain, Qatar and Kuwait said they “decided to repel Houthi militias, al-Qaeda and ISIS [Islamic State of Iraq and Syria] in the country.”
The Gulf states warned that the Houthi coup in Yemen represented a “major threat” to the region’s stability.
It also accused the Iranian-backed militia of conducting military drills on the border of Saudi Arabia, a leading member of the GCC, with “heavy weapons.”
In an apparent reference to Iran, the statement said the “Houthi militia is backed by regional powers in order for it be their base of influence.”
The Gulf states said they had monitored the situation and the Houthi coup in Yemen with “great pain” and accused the Shiite militia of failing to respond to warnings from the United Nations Security Council as well as the GCC.
The envoy added that Yemen’s President Hadi and other members of his cabinet are continuing to run the government from the city of Aden, but refused to give the whereabouts of the president, who reportedly escaped his residence.
“Having Yemen fail is not an option for us,” the envoy told reporters.
The envoy said the started at 7 p.m. EST and the U.S. is not participating in the operation.
A U.S. official told Reuters that Saudi Arabia coordinated with the U.S. ahead of the operation. The U.S. is providing support to Saudi Arabia as it carries out the operation, the U.S. official added, without elaborating on the kinds of support Washington has provided its ally.
Meanwhile, Warplanes launched an attack on Sanaa airport and the Yemeni capital’s al Dulaimi military airbase, residents and an official said. There was no immediate word on the affiliation of the aircraft.
was this sanctioned by the UN..did it go to a vote?
why are nearly all the GCC partners sunni?
this is to curtail iran who they claim is backing the houthis and they are shia..its the old divide again..
the president is now in saudi arabia..
“The U.S. is providing support to Saudi Arabia as it carries out the operation”
did obama get congress approval for this?
so america, as always, seem to back the sunni side over the shia side..why is that?