Yemeni supporters of the southern seperatist movement drive a tank in the city of Aden on April 13, 2015
Yemeni supporters of the southern seperatist movement drive a tank in the city of Aden on April 13, 2015 © Saleh Al-Obeidi - AFP
Yemeni supporters of the southern seperatist movement drive a tank in the city of Aden on April 13, 2015
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AFP
Last updated: April 14, 2015

Yemen chaos driven by Iran's 'hunger for power': Hadi

Unrest in Yemen is being driven by "Iran's hunger for power," exiled President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi alleged Monday, urging Shiite rebels to sit down at the negotiating table.

"My country, Yemen, is under siege by radical Huthi militia forces whose campaign of horror and destruction is fuelled by the political and military support of an Iranian regime obsessed with regional domination," Hadi wrote in an op-ed in the New York Times.

"There is no question that the chaos in Yemen has been driven by Iran's hunger for power and its ambition to control the entire region."

Hadi, who fled into exile in Riyadh in March after the Huthi militia took over the Yemeni capital Sanaa, called for "continued international support to ensure military might on the battlefield now."

"Two weeks ago, Yemen was on the brink of the abyss," Hadi wrote.

"The unprecedented level of Arab and international support brought us back from the edge," he added, referring to a Saudi-led coalition which has launched air strikes seeking to drive out the Huthi militia.

"The message they are sending is clear: Iran cannot continue expanding at the expense of the integrity and security of other countries in the region," Hadi added.

He stressed he had asked for the coalition's help, and warned "if the Huthis do not withdraw and disarm their militia and rejoin the political dialogue, we will continue to urge the coalition to continue its military campaign against them."

But the Western-backed president also called on the rebel militia to come to talks about the Gulf country's future.

"It is not too late to stop the devastation of my nation. The Huthis belong at the negotiating table, not on the battlefield terrorizing their fellow citizens," Hadi said.

"Their ambition should be to establish a secure and stable Yemen."

He maintained that Yemen should press ahead with implementing a new constitution and transition to a new parliament representing both the north and south of the country.

And Hadi blamed former president Ali Abdullah Saleh for refusing to "follow the roadmap for change," adding he "must take responsibility for anarchy in Yemen and call a halt to the needless bloodshed."

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