Family of Saleh leaves Sanaa for South Yemen

Monitoring Desk

SANAA: The family of slain former President Ali Abdullah Saleh has left Yemeni capital Sanaa to the southern city of Aden, according to a Yemeni military source.

Children and women from Saleh’s family left the Houthi-held capital late Saturday to Aden, the current seat of the internationally recognized government, the source said on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on speaking to media.

Hani Ben Brik, the Vice President of the self-proclaimed Southern Transitional Council, which calls for the separation of southern Yemen, has confirmed the arrival of the former president’s family to the city. “Saleh’s family and his relatives would find care and protection in the south until they reach their destination,” he said on Twitter. “If they w-ant to stay in the south, they are welcome as well,” he ad-ded.

According to the military source, Saleh’s family is expected to leave for the United Arab Emirates (UAE), where the former president’s son, Ahmed Saleh, lives since 2015.

Earlier this month, Houthi militiamen executed Saleh — who had until recently been considered one of the group’s primary allies — after waylaying his motorcade outside the capital. His murder came after days of deadly fighting between Houthi rebels and his loyalists across the capital, which they jointly overran in 2014.

Yemen has remained dogged by violence since 2014, when the Houthis and Saleh loyalists overran much of the country, including the capital.

The conflict escalated in 2015 when Saudi Arabia and its Arab allies launched a devastating air campaign aimed at rolling back Houthi gains in Yemen.

Yemen has since become the scene of what the UN has called the worst humanitarian disaster in modern times, with millions on the verge of famine.