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Turkey Freezes Assets of Former Yemeni President Saleh | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Yemen’s former President Ali Abdullah Saleh talks during an interview with Reuters in Sanaa May 21, 2014. REUTERS/Khaled Abdullah

Turkey has frozen all assets of former Yemeni president Ali Abdullah Saleh in Turkish banks and other financial institutions, including safes.

This step comes in line with a decision by the U.N. Security Council, the government said in its Official Gazette on Thursday.

All of Saleh’s assets in Turkish banks and other financial institutions were frozen, it said. It did not specify how much money Saleh was believed to hold in Turkey.

Saleh is believed to have collected as much as $US60 billion ($A77.00 billion), equivalent to Yemen’s annual GDP, during his long rule, and scheming in a takeover by the Houthi militia in 2014, UN-appointed investigators have told the Security Council.

Investigators suspect that most of this wealth has been transferred abroad under false names or the names of others holding the assets on his behalf.

The assets were in the form of property, cash, shares, gold and other valuable commodities, and were believed to spread across at least 20 countries.

Saleh, who is head of Yemen’s General People’s Congress, enjoys the loyalty of sections of the Houthi armed forces backed by Iran. Riyadh, with a coalition of Arab and Muslim nations, launched an Arab military intervention last year to confront perceived Iranian expansionism in its southern neighbor.

A tentative ceasefire is holding as the United Nations prepares for peace talks in Kuwait, proof of the intervention’s success.