In Yemen killed former President

Henrietta Strickland
December 6, 2017

Former Yemeni President Ali Saleh, who was killed by the Houthi rebels, was buried on Wednesday without great solemnities, media reported.

The United Nations says millions of people may die in one of the worst famines of modern times, caused by warring parties blocking food supplies.

"I will lead the battle until the last Houthi is thrown out of Yemen the blood of my father will be hell ringing in the ears of Iran", Ahmed Ali Saleh was quoted as saying.

Sanaa is now the scene of heavy fighting between the Houthis and forces loyal to Saleh.

The Yemen war has claimed more than 10,000 lives since the Saudi-led campaign began.

The Saudi-led coalition had been counting on Saleh's decision to switch sides to tip the balance of a conflict that had been stalemated on the battlefield. The Arab League's general secretariat condemned the Iran-aligned Houthi movement which killed Saleh as a "terrorist organisation" and demanded that the global community view it as such.

A least 234 people were killed in fighting that the International Committee of the Red Cross described as the fiercest since the start of the conflict. Some 7 million people are on the brink of starvation, while one million are suspected to be infected with cholera.

The death of Saleh, who once compared ruling Yemen to dancing on the heads of snakes, deepens the complexity of the multi-sided war. Ali Abdullah Saleh was President of Yemen from 1994 to 2012.

Saleh had joined forces with the Huthis in 2014 when they took control of large parts of the country, including the capital. Saleh was nearly universally hated throughout southern Yemen after he launched a war to unify the country in 1994, lobbing ballistic missiles at the city.

Some feared Saleh's death would create more instability in Yemen, where a stalemate has contributed to a human catastrophe as a Saudi-led blockade and internal fighting has thrust millions of people to the brink of starvation. He is still loved in much of the north and many supporters will bear a grudge towards his killers.

Mattis, speaking with reporters on a military aircraft en route to Washington that his death could either push the conflict towards United Nations peace negotiations or make it an "even more vicious war".

"So this is where we've all got to roll up our sleeves".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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