JEDDAH: Southern separatists clashed Wednesday with presidential guards in Aden, the seat of Yemen’s government, with one person killed and at least two badly injured, local officials and residents told Reuters.
The separatists and the internationally recognized government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi are united in their battle against the Iranian-backed Houthi militia but tensions have previously spilled over between the groups.
The clashes Wednesday took place after hundreds of separatist supporters attended a funeral for some southern troops and a prominent commander.
The funeral took place near the hilltop presidential palace and shooting was exchanged between presidential guards and the crowd.
UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash called for calm, saying communication and dialogue, not violence, was needed.
The UAE, along with Saudi Arabia, is a member of the Arab military coalition supporting the internationally recognized government.
The United Nations special envoy for Yemen, Martin Griffiths, said he was “alarmed by the military escalations in Aden, including reports of clashes in the vicinity of the Presidential Palace.”
I call on the parties involved to abandon violence and engage in dialogue to resolve differences. I also urge all those with influence to de-escalate the situation and ensure the protection of civilians. https://t.co/NsSDERtP5F
— OSE_Yemen (@OSE_Yemen) August 7, 2019
“I am also deeply concerned by the recent rhetoric encouraging violence against Yemeni institutions,” he said.
(With Reuters and AFP)