Ex-Yemeni President Killed by Huthi Rebels

Yemen rebel alliance teeters as strongman turns to Saudis

Abdel-Rahman al-Ahnomi, a top Houthi media official, told The Associated Press that Saleh was killed near Marib, the eastern province bordering Saudi Arabia.

Saleh's reported killing comes as a climax to the fighting erupted between the Iranian-allied Shiite rebels and forces loyal to Saleh last week.

A senior Yemeni government official affiliated with Houthis' rivals and some of Saleh's associates, such as Nabil al-Soufi and Ali al-Bukhiti, confirmed his death on social media and TV interviews.

The Dubai news channel said the sources said Saleh was killed in fighting against the Iran-aligned Houthi group in the capital Sanaa, but gave no further details.

The death of a leader who played a significant role in Yemeni politics is stunning, but experts say Saleh's death won't change the face of the conflict significantly.

Saleh announced the end of his alliance with the Houthis on Saturday.

"I call on our brothers in neighbouring countries... to stop their aggression and lift the blockade... and we will turn the page", he said in a televised speech.

Mostly sunny skies and warm temps Saturday afternoon
Shower chances increase during the afternoon as the front closes in, and become likely during the evening and overnight. Temperatures will soar back into the lower 70s on Monday before a strong cold front marches through the Mid-South.

Saleh announced on Saturday he was ready to turn a "new page" in ties with the Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen if it stopped attacks on Yemeni citizens, in a move that could pave the way to end almost three years of war, Reuters reported.

The Houthi claim come as tensions soar between the insurgents and the Saudi-led coalition, which imposed a crippling blockade on Yemen in response to a Houthi missile that was intercepted near Riyadh airport on 4 November.

Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh waves to supporters in Sanaa, Yemen, before his ouster in 2011. He remained in the country, however, and continued to wield political power from behind the scenes.

Tensions between the Houthi and Saleh's party rose Wednesday after Saleh's supporters refused access of the Houthis to the Saleh Mosque in the south of Sanaa to secure a religious ceremony to commemorate birthday of Prophet Muhammad. Witnesses said dead bodies, those of civilians and rebel fighters alike, littered the streets of Yemen's capital.

Fierce fighting around Yemen has reportedly killed dozens of people over the weekend (December 2 to 3).

Saudi Arabia and the United States have accused Iran of supplying weapons to the Huthis, which Tehran strongly denies.

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