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Yemen’s President Cedes Power Amid International Efforts to End Civil War

Yemeni President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi has ceded his powers to a leadership council in a Saudi-backed move aimed at re-establishing negotiations with Houthi rebels. The negotiations seek to end the country’s sever-year civil war that has wreaked havoc on Yemen’s political and economic stability. Before leaving his own position, former President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi also dismissed his vice president before announcing his own resignation. Both of the men in office were seen as obstacles by the Iran allied Houthis. The United Nations has been searching for a diplomatic solution to the conflict, which it says has produced the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.

On Thursday, Saudi Arabia announced its endorsement of Yemen’s new leadership, urging the start of peace talks. In addition, the country released a video of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman receiving the council at his palace in Riyadh. The country also announced a $3 billion direct economic aid package and $300 million for the UN humanitarian response to address several key issues in Yemen including cholera, famine, and injuries from airstrikes and other conflict. Despite the show of support, Houthi spokesman Mohammed Abdel Salam stated that Yemen’s future would be determined within the borders of the country, denouncing any activity outside of Yemen as theatrics.

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