Houthi militia free G Muse ship after holding it hostage for 62 days

The port of the Yemeni city of Hodeida can be seen in this file photo on June 24, 2018. (AFP)
Updated 07 July 2018
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Houthi militia free G Muse ship after holding it hostage for 62 days

LONDON: The Saudi-led coalition fighting Houthi militia in Yemen announced on Saturday that the Houthis had freed the G Muse ship that it had been holding captive for the last 62 days at the port of Hodeidah.
The coalition added that there are currently four ships docked in the port of Hodeidah waiting to unload their cargo, while four others are waiting to enter the port.
The coalition also said that a ship is anchored in Salif port, while another is waiting to enter it.
The port of Hodeidah is Yemen’s main lifeline for the import of humanitarian aid, but it is also a conduit for smuggling weapons to the Iranian-backed Houthis, including components of missiles launched from northern Yemen and aimed at cities in Saudi Arabia.
UN envoy Martin Griffiths has been conducting shuttle diplomacy in search of a political solution that would avert an all-out military assault on the Houthi-held port city of Hodeidah by the coalition.
Griffiths is expected to hold a meeting with Yemen’s President Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi on Monday.


Algeria tensions: Governing party chief backs protesters

Updated 20 March 2019
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Algeria tensions: Governing party chief backs protesters

  • Moab Bouchareb told a meeting of party leaders that the party “supports the popular movement”

ALGIERS: The acting head of Algeria’s governing party says it is throwing its support behind protests against President Abdelaziz Bouteflika
Critics viewed the move Wednesday as an effort to save the reputation of the FLN party, or National Liberation Front, amid increasing disillusionment with Algeria’s power structure.
FLN interim leader Moab Bouchareb told a meeting of party leaders that the party “supports the popular movement.” But he also appeared to support Bouteflika’s “roadmap” for political reforms.
Bouchareb himself has been criticized as representing a leadership considered corrupt and out of touch with Algeria’s struggling youth. The FLN is Bouteflika’s party.
On Wednesday, foreign affairs minister Ramtane Lamamra said the Algerian government is “ready for dialogue” with demonstrators.
“As I see it, the demonstrations have only grown more numerous, and there will be no solution except through dialogue,” he said in a press conference in Berlin.
“The Algerian government is ready for dialogue, and beyond that, they are prepared to welcome the representatives of the opposition and civil society in the new government which is currently being formed.”
Algerian Prime Minister Noureddine Bedoui has been struggling to form a new government as candidates sought to keep their distance from Bouteflika. Bedoui, who was appointed last week, had promised to create a new cabinet within days to respond to the demands of Algeria’s demonstrating youth.
Separately, the Protestant Church of Algeria issued a statement supporting the protests. The Church, whose exact number of members is not precisely known in the largely Muslim country, said it “fully shares the aspirations and legitimate claims of the Algerian people.”
Algeria’s union for imams and the Islamic High Council, a consultative body, had previously expressed their support for the protests.
Protesters want the ailing Bouteflika to step down after 20 years in power. Bouteflika responded by abandoning plans for a fifth term and promising reforms, but also delayed presidential elections indefinitely.
Demonstrators have demanded the government quit at the technical end of its mandate in April, along with the president who has rarely been seen since a 2013 stroke.