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Aides deny Yemen's President Hadi has fled Houthi advance


Yemen

Aides deny Yemen's President Hadi has fled Houthi advance

Aides to Yemen’s President Hadi have denied that he has fled abroad in the face of an advance by Houthi rebels, following a report quoting the presidential guard which said he had left the country.

Two officials insisted he was still in Aden and had no plans to leave.

The president has been based in Aden since fleeing Sanaa last month.

Although forces loyal to Hadi have been rallying to defend the city, Houthi fighters are said to have advanced to within 40 kilometres after overrunning Yemen’s largest air base at al-Anad.

That information has not been confirmed, but residents and security sources have reported heavy fighting.

People in Aden say public sector workers have been told to go home, with some taking up arms.

Yemen’s third-largest city Taiz was taken by the Iranian-backed Shia rebels at the weekend.

There, thousands took to the streets to protest against the Houthi takeover.

Several people were killed in clashes with the rebels.

President Hadi has called for international military intervention to protect the country.

The Houthis’ advance into Sunni Muslim areas has raised fears that regional rivals Iran and Saudi Arabia could be drawn into the Yemeni conflict.

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