Yemen civil war leader killed by enemy group

Yemen rebel alliance teeters as strongman turns to Saudis

Yemen rebel alliance teeters as strongman turns to Saudis

Yemen's former leader Ali Abdullah Saleh was killed Monday as fighting broke out in the capital city Sanaa, according to government officials and members of his party.

It was not immediately possible to confirm the authenticity of the video, which was circulating widely on social media.

However, Saleh's party said the ex-president had been killed outside Sanaa.

Saleh's reported killing comes as a climax to the fighting erupted between the Iranian-allied Shiite rebels and forces loyal to Saleh last week.

Gun battles between the Houthis and Saleh loyalists erupted in the capital Sanaa on December 3 as residents reported a "street war" between the former allies.

The Huthis stopped the four-car convoy about 40 kilometres (25 miles) south of Sanaa and shot dead Saleh, GPC secretary general Arif al-Zouka and his deputy Yasir al-Awadi, a military source said.

The source said that clashes had renewed on Saturday between the Houthis and Saleh's supporters in the Yemeni capital Sana'a.

Yemen rebel alliance teeters as strongman turns to Saudis

But in recent months, the alliance frayed amid Houthi suspicions Saleh was leaning toward the Saudi-led coalition backing Hadi.

Former Yemeni president Ali Abdullah Saleh officially broke with his Houthi militia allies, calling on his supporters to rise up against them across the country.

The breakdown of the fragile alliance has caused the Saudi-led coalition to step up its bombing of Houthi positions, in support of Saleh's forces, leaving the rebels increasingly isolated after three years of war.

"We have notified the leader of the traitor and criminal militias to retract, be wise, to stop his militias from continuing committing crimes", he said, "Today is the day of the fall of the conspiracy of betrayal and treason".

It was a grisly end for a figure who was able to rule the impoverished and unstable country for more than three decades and remained a powerhouse even after he was ousted in a 2011 Arab Spring uprising.

Saudi Arabia and the United States have accused Iran of supplying weapons to the Huthis, which Tehran strongly denies.

The International Committee of the Red Cross said at least 125 people were killed and 238 wounded in six days of fighting in Sanaa.

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