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Aden residents fear fall of city to Houthis: Source

Sources indicate that Aden, where until recently President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi was stationed after the Houthi takeover of Sanaa, may fall to the same as locals seek arms

Ahmed Eleiba , Wednesday 25 Mar 2015
Yemen
People carry a man injured during a gunfire at an army base in Yemen's southern port city of Aden March 25, 2015 (Photo: Reuters)
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A source in Aden told Ahram Online that Aden's streets are almost empty amid conflicting reports regarding President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi's location. The source also reported that citizens in Aden are terrified of an imminent fall of the city.

Warplanes launched three rocket attacks Wednesday afternoon against the presidential palace in Aden, several hours after Yemen's President Hadi fled the city as Houthi militias close in on the southern capital.

Political researcher Abdel Hakim El-Miony said the situation in Yemen does not bode well and that some have called for defending Aden so as not to let it fall into the hands of Houthis. However, they fear the presence of supporters of the Houthis and former president ِAli Abdullah Saleh, which could confront the popular committees President Hadi formed.

Regarding the stance of political forces such as both the southern separatist movement (known as Al-Hirak in Arabic) and the movement of military retirees, El-Miony said that these movements have been absent from the political scene.

"Even the secretary general of the council of Al-Hirak, Abdul Rahman Al-Jafari, has disappeared. There may have been contact between Mohamed Ali Ahmed, vice chairman of Al-Hirak, and ex-interior minister and vice president Ali Salim Al-Beidh a few days ago, where they talked about the necessity of unity. However, nothing happened until now," El-Miony said.

In a related development, another source in Aden said that the popular committees and other citizens are attempting to break into army camps in Aden in order to seize weapons.

The source added that a storehouse in Jebel Hadid fell during one such attempt, and many were killed and wounded during the operation.

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