World Bulletin / News Desk
Iran and Houthi movement have signed an agreement, under which the former would help upgrade Yemen's infrastructure, Yemen's state-run Saba news agency, now under the Houthis' control, reported.
The announcement was made by Saleh al-Samad, head of the Houthi group's political council, as he returned home late Thursday following a two-week visit to Iran, the agency said.
Al-Samad has hailed the visit as "successful and fruitful" and asserted that it would bring about positive outcome for Yemen's development plans.
He asserted that his accompanying delegation to the talks included ministry undersecretaries and heads of government agencies. Yet, he did not name any of them.
According to the senior Houthi leader, the agreement was signed by Iranian Trade Minister Mohammad Reza Nematzadeh and would cover cooperation in the sectors of energy, electricity, transportation, water and sewage.
Al-Samad said that the Iranian officials had expressed readiness to provide Yemen with oil for one year and to build a 165-megawatt power plant in the energy-starved country.
The agreement also envisaged cooperation to expand and develop the Red Sea port of Al-Hudaydah, he added, referring to the strategic port that the group had seized months ago.
There has been a rise in the number of Houthi delegations visiting Iran following the initiation of direct flights between Sanaa and Tehran late last month.
In late February, Yemen's Shiite Houthi group – which now controls most government institutions in Sanaa – signed a memorandum of understanding with Tehran by which 28 direct flights would be operated between Sanaa and Tehran each week.
Some observers voiced fears that the flights could be used to transfer arms to the Houthis.
The powerful Shiite group has captured Yemen's capital Sanaa in September of 2014. In early February of this year, they issued what they called a constitutional declaration, dissolving Yemen's parliament.
They also put Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi under house arrest before he escaped to the southern city of Aden later and announced what he described as their "coup" against his legitimacy "null" and "void."
Some Gulf States have accused Iran of backing a Shiite insurgency in the fractious nationGüncelleme Tarihi: 13 Mart 2015, 14:41