RIYADH (AFP) – UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called on Sunday for the restoration to power in Yemen of Western-backed President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi after Huthi militia seized power.
“The situation is very, very seriously deteriorating, with the Huthis taking power and making this government vacuum,” Ban said, referring to the Shiite militia which dissolved the Sanaa government and parliament on Friday.
“There must be restoration of legitimacy of President Hadi,” the UN chief told reporters after talks with King Salman in neighbouring Saudi Arabia.
The Huthi militia on Friday created a “presidential council” in a move it said was designed to fill a power vacuum and would head off the threat from al-Qaeda, which has a strong presence in east and south Yemen.
The six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), led by Sunni-dominated Saudi Arabia, on Saturday described the Huthi action as a coup.
The militia overran Sanaa in September, then seized the presidential palace and key government buildings last month, prompting Hadi and Prime Minister Khalid Bahah to resign.