Yemen: UAE backed southern separatists take control of Aden

Yemen separatists have taken control of the port city of Aden after days of fighting with troops loyal to the internationally backed governments.

Forces aligned with the UAE-backed Southern Transitional Council (STC), who want an independent south said they had seized control of military camps and the presidential palace.

The opposing Saudi-led coalition said it had responded with military action. The government itself characterised the STC’s seizure of Aden as a “coup”.

Coalition forces asked STC to withdraw from their positions in Aden or face further action. It said it launched its strike against a “threat” to the country’s government.

With STC in control of Aden on Saturday, both sides agreed to a ceasefire.

Southern separatists have fought alongside pro-government forces for much of Yemen’s civil conflict but it has long seemed an uneasy alliance.

The southern port city of Aden has been the temporary base of President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi’s government. The president who is based in the Saudi capital Riyadh.

Speaking with AFP separatist said they seized the presidential palace on Saturday without a fight.

“Two hundred soldiers from the Presidential Guard were given safe passage out of the palace,” the official said.

The United Nations said as many as 40 people have been killed since 8 August, with 260 injured. However, Yemeni security officials say the death toll could be much higher than 70.

Source : Various