Monday, March 30, 2015

#Yemen ex-strongman's son 'sacked as ambassador'

Ahmed Ali Saleh

The son of former Yemeni strongman Ali Abdullah Saleh, accused of backing a rebellion, has been sacked as ambassador to the United Arab Emirates, officials said on Monday.

Ahmed Ali Saleh was relieved of his duties at the demand of the UAE, according to a Gulf diplomatic official who did not want to be named.

The UAE is a member of an Arab coalition waging an air war on Houthi Shia militants and military units loyal to Saleh that have risen up against President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi.

A Hadi aide confirmed the president had dismissed Ahmed Ali Saleh as ambassador but said it had not yet been officially announced.

The embattled leader has taken refuge in neighbouring Saudi Arabia, which is leading the coalition against the Houthis and their allies, who have seized swathes of the country.

Saleh was president for more than three decades until stepping down in 2012 after a bloody year-long uprising.

His son was afterwards named ambassador to the UAE but is believed to have remained in Yemen.

Foreign diplomats in Abu Dhabi said they had not seen him since his appointment.

Previously he had commanded the Republican Guard, which remains loyal to his father.