Yemen's deadly civil war takes an unexpected turn

A supporter of former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh is seen with his weapon outside of al Saleh mosque in Sana’a Yemen

The coalition has also been accused of committing war crimes through indiscriminate attacks on residential areas in cities controlled by the rebel forces.

"Disagreements (between the two sides) can be settled through negotiation, and invaders and enemies will get the most out of the sedition", he said, urging Saleh to abandon such "irresponsible" and "suspicious" moves.

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.

Former President Saleh's General People's Congress party, accused the Houthis of failing to honor the truce and said in a statement on its website that the Houthis bear responsibility for dragging the country into a civil war.

Saleh's call comes amid street fighting between his loyalists and Houthi rebels across the capital Sanaa.

"Our country is under aggression and the Houthis are the cause of this aggression due to their practices", he said.

"We vow to our brothers and neighbours that, after a ceasefire is in place and the blockade is lifted ... we will hold dialogue directly through the legitimate authority represented by our parliament".

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




The United Nations released a stern warning on Friday to the Saudi-led coalition of the catastrophic consequences associated with not fully lifting the blockade on Yemen, and UN leaders on Saturday issued a joint statement calling for the full lifting of the blockade.

"The decision by (Saleh's) General People's Congress to take the lead and their choice to side with their people will free Yemen of. militias loyal to Iran", the statement carried by the official Saudi Press Agency said.

Diab says the Saudi-coalition forces are not too far from the capital, and the Houthis have become widely despised due to shortages of food, water, medicine and money.

The coalition accuses non-Arab Iran of trying to expand its influence into Arab countries, including Yemen, which shares a long border with Saudi Arabia, by aligning themselves with the Houthis and Saleh.

The head of the Houthis' Ansarullah group warned that the biggest victor from what he described as Saleh's "sedition" was the Saudi-led coalition.

He told Yemenis all across the country that if they support him, "to defend the nation, the republic and the revolution".

The Houthi group leader, Abdel-Malek al-Houthi, had earlier appealed to Mr Saleh to avoid any escalation, saying that the crisis would only serve Yemen's enemies.

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