Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Thousands of Yemenis stage biggest anti-Houthi protest in Sana'a - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
Select Page
Yemeni protesters shout slogans during a rally in Sana'a against the control of the capital by Houthi rebels on January 24, 2015. (AFP Photo/Mohammed Huwais)

Yemeni protesters shout slogans during a rally in Sana’a against the control of the capital by Houthi rebels on January 24, 2015. (AFP Photo/Mohammed Huwais)

Sana’a, Reuters—Thousands of Yemenis took to the streets on Saturday in the biggest demonstration yet against the Houthi group that dominates Yemen, two days after President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi’s resignation left the country in political limbo.

Witnesses said up to 10,000 people began marching from Sana’a University towards Hadi’s home some 2 miles (3 kilometers) away, repeating chants denouncing both the Shi’ite Muslim Houthi group and predominantly Sunni Al-Qaeda.

“Long live the Yemeni people. No to Houthis and no to Affash,” the crowd shouted, using a nickname for former President Ali Abdullah Saleh who was toppled in a 2011 uprising against his 33-year-rule.

Saleh had been cited by the UN Security Council for aiding the Houthis to capture Sana’a, capital of the predominantly Sunni country, in September.

Hadi, who stepped down on Thursday, blamed the Houthis’ control of Sana’a for scuttling his attempt to steer Yemen toward stability after years of turmoil, tribal unrest, deepening poverty and US drone strikes on Sunni Islamist militants.

The Houthis virtually held Hadi prisoner at his home residence this week. They accuse him of reneging on a power-sharing agreement they signed with the country’s main political parties in his presence after they seized Sana’a.

“We came out today to reject the coup and against the Houthi militia’s control of the capital,” said one student who identified herself as Maimouna, holding a placard which rejects plans to incorporate the Houthi fighters into the army.

Houthi fighters and police made no attempt to obstruct the protest, witnesses said.

On Friday, thousands of Houthi supporters gathered in Sana’a with placards calling for “Death to America, Death to Israel”, a slogan that has become the group’s trademark.

The Yemeni parliament is scheduled to meet on Sunday to discuss Hadi’s resignation. Under the constitution, parliamentary speaker Yahya Al-Raiee, who comes from Saleh’s General People’s Congress party, takes office for an interim period while new elections are organized.

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat is the world’s premier pan-Arab daily newspaper, printed simultaneously each day on four continents in 14 cities. Launched in London in 1978, Asharq Al-Awsat has established itself as the decisive publication on pan-Arab and international affairs, offering its readers in-depth analysis and exclusive editorials, as well as the most comprehensive coverage of the entire Arab world.

More Posts

Follow Me:
FacebookGoogle PlusYouTube