Yemen's new PM quits after Houthis call mass protest

The leader of the Houthi group which seized control of Yemen's capital last month called for a mass protest in Sanaa against what he termed foreign intervention in choosing a new prime minister.

Yemen's new PM quits after Houthis call mass protest

World Bulletin/News Desk

Yemen's new Prime Minister Ahmed Awad bin Mubarak quit his post early on Thursday hours after the Houthi militia called for mass protests against the "foreign interference" they said was behind his appointment.

Mubarak said in a post on Facebook just 33 hours after his appointment was announced by President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi that he had turned down the post in his first meeting with presidential advisers.

He did not refer directly to the criticism of his appointment by the Houthis, who seized the capital last month, but said he was aware of the pressure Hadi was under and praised the president for his handling of the country's political crisis.

Houthi leader Abdul-Malik al-Houthi on Wednesday accused Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi of becoming a "lackey" of outside powers.

In a televised address, al-Houthi said the Yemeni president had appointed his office chief Ahmed bin Mubarak as prime minister upon "dictations" from U.S. ambassador to Yemen Matthew H. Tueller.

"We won't accept a situation in which the Yemeni president becomes a toy in the hands of outside powers," al-Houthi said.

He said the Yemeni President had told him that he would not appoint bin Mubarak as prime minister, but he changed his position soon after meeting the American ambassador.

"This means that bin Mubarak was the nominee of foreign embassies in general and the American ambassador in particular," he said. "This is a blatant interference in the affairs of Yemen," he added.

He referred to a campaign aiming at tarnishing the image of what he described as the Yemeni "popular uprising" – or more accurately the Houthi control of the capital Sanaa – of September 21. 

Thousands of Houthi militants controlled the Yemeni capital late last month despite an agreement signed with the Yemeni President to end the political crisis in the country.

Houthis controlled government institutions in the capital, including the Defense Ministry headquarters, sending shockwaves across the Arabian Peninsula where there is growing fear of a Shiite uprising in Yemen.

In his televised address on Wednesday, al-Houthi said Yemenis feel oppressed everywhere in their poor country.

Anadolu Agency could not get comments from the Yemeni President on the accusations by al-Houthi.

On Tuesday, Hadi tasked his office chief Ahmed bin Mubarak with forming a new government, but Houthis rejected the appointment.

Bin Mubarak's appointment was part of the deal signed between the president and the Houthis on September 21. The deal calls for the appointment of a nonpartisan prime minister and Houthi advisors to the Yemeni President.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 09 Ekim 2014, 16:41